The LA’s in-house Staff Absence Pool has been available for schools to purchase for over 25 years. However, over recent years, the premiums generated have been less than the value of the claims paid by between £100,000 and £200,000 each year. Currently, these deficits are absorbed by the Council’s Insurance Reserve and, in effect, subsidised by other Council services.
There has been a slow and steady decline of uptake, mainly due to academy/free school conversions who are unable to benefit from the scheme. Currently only 44% of LA maintained schools opt to purchase the cover. The decrease in school numbers will affect the total financial pool available to settle claims.
We have considered various options but unfortunately the Council believes there is no realistic alternative but to cease this scheme from March 2023. We are wanting to consult with schools prior to taking this action. There are various other staff absence insurance schemes available to schools. The Council’s Insurance Team have made initial enquiries with one of the top external providers of a mutual scheme which appears competitive compared to the existing scheme. Providers can easily be found using an internet search for “school staff absence scheme UK” such as Education Mutual, Schools Advisory Service, and Schools UK – Staff Absence Insurance. Please note, the Council cannot make a provider recommendation which must be obtained through the appropriate procurement process. If you require any assistance with claims history please contact the Insurance Team ([email protected]).
If you could let us know your thoughts by emailing the Organisational Support Team at [email protected] by 30th September 2022.