Short-notice school closures could create wider disruption

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Teachers’ unions the NUT and the NASUWT are planning a one-day strike for their members on Tuesday 1 October 2013.

The North Yorkshire County Council are keeping an actively updated website at www.northyorks.gov.uk/schoolclosures

Teachers are not obliged to declare if they will be involved with the strike, meaning that many schools will not know if they are open until the day of the strike.

Adam Hartley, an Employment Partner at DLA Piper in Leeds has commented on the situation.

Adam Hartley said:

Many schools across Harrogate have announced that they will close tomorrow (due to strike action, leaving parents to make last-minute alternative childcare arrangements.

This could include taking the day off work, causing disruption to employers.

Employers may have few options to prevent this disruption; restricting annual leave will inevitably lead to significant employee relations issues and if employees are given only short notice of school closures they could well have a legal right to take emergency leave for dependants in any event.

Although the union will have given the required 7 days’ notice of strike action, it may take time for each school to confirm what the impact will be, particularly as individual employees are under no obligation to inform their employer whether they intend to strike.

To avoid or minimise potential disruption from this industrial action, it is advisable for affected employers to consider whether they can implement flexible working for employees whose children are unable to go to school due to strikes.

Employers may also need to closely monitor absence on the day of the strike in order to be able to deal with unauthorised absence.

Public sector organisations will face difficulty keeping essential services operating when staff are on strike. There are legal restrictions on using agency workers to cover for striking workers, so employers cannot bring in temporary cover from outside the organisation. Non-striking workers can be asked to cover for colleagues, but many union members will refuse to do so and employers may not be able to oblige non-striking workers to cover under their contracts of employment.

Adam Hartley added:

The potential impact of short term strike action should not be underestimated. Should strikes threaten to damage the economic recovery, the pressure on Government to make changes to the law on industrial action will increase.

Calls for tighter controls over industrial action are likely to increase if the private sector faces significant disruption as a result of public sector action.

This may be the impetus which the Government needs to seriously consider tightening up the balloting requirements for industrial action.

Update as of Monday 30 September 2013, 2.15 pm

DfE Number School Status
8152080 Applegarth Primary School Open
8153240 Goldsborough Church of England Primary School Open
8153155 Hertford Vale Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School, Staxton Open
8153249 Kirkby Malzeard Church of England Primary School Open
8153307 Michael Syddall Church of England Aided Primary School Open
8153368 Richard Taylor Church of England Primary School Open
8153092 Richmond Church of England Primary School Open
8153268 Selby Abbey Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Open
8153270 Settle Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Open
8153378 St Josephs Catholic Primary School, Harrogate Open
8153282 Wistow Parochial Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Open
8152309 Boroughbridge Primary School Partially Open
8154224 Brayton College Partially Open
8152225 Broomfield School Partially Open
8153306 Carlton and Faceby Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School Partially Open
8152212 Catterick Garrison, Carnagill Community Primary School Partially Open
8152173 Catterick Garrison, Le Cateau Community Primary School Partially Open
8154608 Ermysteds Grammar School Partially Open
8152114 Friarage Community Primary School Partially Open
8151102 Hambleton/Richmondshire Pupil Referral Service Partially Open
8152056 Hawes Community Primary School Partially Open
8152236 Helmsley Community Primary School Partially Open
8152305 High Bentham Community Primary School Partially Open
8153053 Hipswell Church of England Primary School Partially Open
8152368 Hookstone Chase Community Primary School Partially Open
8152228 Hutton Rudby Primary School Partially Open
8152391 Ingleton Primary School Partially Open
8154202 King Jamess School Partially Open
8152042 Lealholm Primary School Partially Open
8152040 Leeming and Londonderry Community Primary School Partially Open
8154077 Malton School Partially Open
8153320 Middleham Church of England Aided School Partially Open
8154223 Nidderdale High School and Community College Partially Open
8152376 Oatlands Community Junior School Partially Open
8154004 Risedale Community College Partially Open
8153126 Ruswarp Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Partially Open
8152425 Saltergate Infant School Partially Open
8151100 Scarborough Pupil Referral Unit Partially Open
8152112 Scarborough, Braeburn Infant and Nursery School Partially Open
8152223 Seamer and Irton Community Primary School Partially Open
8154205 Settle College Partially Open
8152183 Sowerby Community Primary School Partially Open
8154605 St Francis Xavier School Partially Open
8153631 St Georges Roman Catholic Primary School Partially Open
8153602 St Heddas Roman Catholic Primary School Partially Open
8153005 St Hildas Ampleforth Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Partially Open
8153610 St Josephs Roman Catholic Primary School, Pickering Partially Open
8153373 St Marys Catholic Primary School Partially Open
8152217 Stakesby Community Primary School Partially Open
8152332 Starbeck Community Primary and Nursery Partially Open
8154047 Stokesley School Partially Open
8152237 Thirsk Community Primary School Partially Open
8154035 Thirsk School & Sixth Form College Partially Open
8152360 Thornton in Craven Community Primary School Partially Open
8154039 Whitby Community College Partially Open
8152364 Willow Tree Community Primary School Partially Open
8154208 Aireville School Closed
8154074 Allertonshire School Closed
8152301 Appleton Roebuck Primary School Closed
8153369 Barkston Ash Catholic Primary School Closed
8154232 Barlby High School Closed
8152108 Barrowcliff Nursery and Infant School Closed
8154052 Bedale High School Closed
8157000 Brompton Hall School Closed
8154059 Caedmon School Closed
8152256 Castleton Community Primary School Closed
8152316 Cononley Community Primary School Closed
8153022 Croft Church of England Primary School Closed
8152347 Darley Community Primary School Closed
8154005 Easingwold School Closed
8152257 East Ayton Community Primary School Closed
8153153 Escrick Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8154041 Eskdale School Closed
8153154 Filey Church of England Voluntary Controlled Infant and Nursery School Closed
8152413 Filey Junior School Closed
8153139 Fylingdales Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8154069 George Pindar Community Sports College Closed
8152117 Gladstone Road Infant School Closed
8152116 Gladstone Road Junior School Closed
8152041 Glaisdale Primary School Closed
8152393 Glusburn Community Primary School Closed
8153244 Hambleton Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8152403 Hunmanby Primary School Closed
8152404 Langton Primary School Closed
8152405 Leavening Community Primary School Closed
8152065 Leyburn Community Primary School Closed
8152233 Lindhead School Closed
8153069 Lythe Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8152163 Mill Hill Community Primary School Closed
8153257 Monk Fryston Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8152076 Newby and Scalby Primary School Closed
8152081 North and South Cowton Community Primary School Closed
8152408 Norton Community Primary School Closed
8152235 Pickering Community Infant School Closed
8154076 Richmond School Closed
8154022 Ryedale School Closed
8152424 Saltergate Community Junior School Closed
8154073 Scalby School Closed
8152109 Scarborough, Barrowcliff Community Junior School Closed
8152161 Scarborough, Braeburn Community Junior School Closed
8152120 Scarborough, Northstead Community Primary School Closed
8154225 Selby High School Specialist School for the Arts Closed
8151104 Selby Pupil Referral Service Closed
8152221 Sinnington Primary School Closed
8157024 Springwater School Closed
8154604 St Augustines Roman Catholic School, Scarborough Closed
8154609 St John Fisher Catholic High School Closed
8153376 St Josephs Catholic Primary School Closed
8153124 St Nicholas Church of England Primary School, West Tanfield Closed
8153615 St Peters Roman Catholic Primary School Closed
8152138 Stillington Primary School Closed
8152139 Stokesley Community Primary School Closed
8153113 Sutton on the Forest Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8152359 Sutton-in-Craven Community Primary School Closed
8154211 Tadcaster Grammar School Closed
8152427 Tadcaster, Riverside Community Primary School Closed
8157022 The Forest School Closed
8154075 The Wensleydale School Closed
8153119 Thornton Watlass Church of England Primary School Closed
8154206 Upper Wharfedale School Closed
8153163 Weaverthorpe Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School Closed
8152190 Whitby, Airy Hill Community Primary School Closed

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