Coronavirus Changes to Industrial Requirements

As part of the JobKeeper legislative package changes were made to the Fair Work Act which which temporarily enables employers to issue “JobKeeper enabling directions”.

These can provide (subject to various safeguards) for increased flexibility around employees’ hours of work via a new JobKeeper enabling stand down direction, performance of duties and location of work. It also enables employers and employees to make agreements for increased flexibility around annual leave arrangements and days and times of work. The FWC will be able to resolve disputes, including by arbitration. More details here.
The catch?  These new flexible arrangements only apply to employers who qualify for the Jobkeeper scheme.  Once again, it seems that most schools are likely to miss out on these very sensible temporary arrangements.
For schools employing staff under the moderns awards changes have also been made by the Fair Work Commission yesterday to introduce two weeks of unpaid pandemic leave and the ability to take annual leave at half pay for general staff and teachers employed in early childhood services operating for at least 48 weeks per year.

The Educational Services (Schools) General Staff Award 2010  has been updated for these changes and we expect that the Educational Services (Teachers) Award 2010  will be updated shortly.