Case Study

Robust Management of Excessive Sickness Absence Helps New Headteacher


The challenge

BIRCH-HR took on a new school which had converted to an Academy 4 years previously, and which had been under the sponsorship of a city university. Unfortunately, due to management issues, it was decided that the academy should be removed from the university. A new Interim Headteacher was installed and the academy became part of a local Community Trust.

Moreover, the new Headteacher was quite inexperienced as this was her first Headship. She was being supported by an unmotivated HR Manager from the university (who was going to be made redundant).

Furthermore, one key issue had been identified in respect of the Caretaker. He had been taking massive amounts of sickness absence over the previous 4 years. He had started to tell the Head and HR Manager what he was going to do and when. They had attempted a phased return, which had failed. They were finding it hard to manage the situation.

What we did

BIRCH-HR arranged a meeting with the Caretaker and his Union Rep. In this meeting all parties went through the job description to ascertain whether the Caretaker was in fact fit to do his job. After thorough consideration it was agreed that the Caretaker was fit for the role. BIRCH-HR then proposed a plan for his speedy return and the Caretaker has now returned to the workplace.

The result

The school and Union rep were both pleased that a challenging sickness absence matter had been handled robustly, professionally and successfully.

A leading team of HR specialists, BIRCH-HR support members of the education, health and SME sectors by providing insightful HR consultancy services leading to effective solutions and cost savings. They work with organisations to manage HR policies, procedures and day-to-day challenges in the most proactive, straightforward and cost-effective manner. Their professional services result in organisational growth, positive change, cost reductions and improvements in recruitment, retention, management and leadership.

Enquire Today

We look forward to arranging a convenient time to establish how we can best support your current leadership with the delivery of both current and future HR priorities.