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But I am Permanent!

Is permanency within CESA guaranteed?

This question appears in the Priority Recruitment Program FAQ circulated to schools that belong to the Catholic Church Endowment Society (Archdiocese of Adelaide) where the need for redundancy is confirmed. The answer within the same circular is a sobering “there are no guarantees.”

The Priority Recruitment Program is focussed on finding ongoing employment for people who are likely to be without a job in their current school. In so doing, there will be an impact on people wishing to simply change jobs and for people wanting to join the system from another sector.

The “system” needs to find as many ongoing vacancies as possible and match them to people being displaced. That means that requests for leave without pay and temporary changes to FTE may be more difficult to accommodate, dependent upon circumstances.

It also means that ongoing jobs (except perhaps for some specialist roles) will not be openly advertised as they will be held for displaced employees.

That being the case what does one need to know or what does one do if redundancy becomes a reality at your school?

  • The first act is to make the IEU aware. Talk to your organiser.
  • The second is to understand the process that the employer will undertake and participate in that process to maximise the chances of achieving the outcome you want.

Once staff have been told redundancies will be required at your school, those wishing to accept a voluntary redundancy package should identify themselves to their principal immediately in writing. While acceptance is at the discretion of the principal, if accepted, this will mean fewer forced redundancies for the remaining staff.

Those offering to take a voluntary redundancy should understand that the employer will not allow them to work in a CCES school for 2 years other than to do TRT work.

If voluntary redundancies do not resolve overstaffing issues, the school will be forced to identify the staff whose jobs will be made redundant. The IEU will need to be consulted and will, on behalf of members, provide input into this process.

If selected you will then become part of the pool of ‘displayed’ employees.

The employer has undertaken to offer to these employees all suitable permanent jobs available in CCES schools. As there may be more than one employee wishing to fill a vacancy, you need to be proactive in being selected. If you are matched with a vacancy, you will be asked to have a discussion with the new principal. This is not meant to be a full-on interview, but you will need to “put your best foot forward” to demonstrate that you would be a good fit for the role.

If your position is to be made redundant and you do not participate in the process, you are more likely to be directed to a vacant position. If at the end of the process no suitable jobs exist, your position will become a forced redundancy. The only upside to this is the fact it will not prevent you from applying for another job in a CCES school, but that will be by the full formal employment process.

Remember the first step after being advised redundancies will be necessary at your school is to contact the IEU immediately.