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Do I have to offer a redundant employee a vacancy within the school?

Do I have to offer a redundant employee a vacancy within the school?

This depends on whether the employee is reasonably capable of performing any vacancy which exists. If they do not have the necessary skills or experience, it will not be suitable and therefore you do not need to offer it.  An example of this would be the potential redundancy of an English teacher, with a possible vacancy of a French teacher.  If the employee at risk of redundancy cannot teach (or presumably speak) French, then this role doesn’t need to be offered as an alternative to redundancy.  However, if they are capable of performing the vacancy, they are entitled to be offered it, in preference to any external candidate, or any internal candidate whose role is not at risk. If there is more than one redundant employee who wishes to take the vacancy, they should all be considered for this. You can either use a scoring matrix or a competitive interview process to select the successful candidate.

Where an employee is offered (and accepts) a vacancy, there is a statutory four-week trial period where both parties can assess whether the role is suitable. The employee can choose to resign within this trial period and claim a statutory redundancy payment if they wish.

Where an employee unreasonably refuses an offer of suitable alternative employment, they are not entitled to a statutory redundancy payment. However, case law is very strict on when a school can withhold a redundancy payment on this basis, and specific advice should be sought before doing so.