Frequently Asked Questions

We know that making the change from an independent school to being part of an Academy Trust is a big change. Below you’ll find our frequently asked questions which will help explain more about how the Trust works. If you’re an employee transferring into Marches Academy Trust, select our FAQs for employees for more information.
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Questions for Employees

What is TUPE?

TUPE is the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations. It protects employees’ terms and conditions of employment when a business is transferred from one owner to another. Employees of the previous local authority or Multi Academy Trust become employees of the new employer (Marches Academy Trust) on the same terms and conditions. Continuity of service and any other rights are all preserved. Both old and new employers are required to inform and consult employees affected directly or indirectly by the transfer.

What is the consultation period?

Under TUPE Regulations there is no set period for consultation, other than it must be reasonable. However, if measures are proposed then a specified timescale may be required.

Will I have a group or individual consultation meeting?

Your employer will probably arrange both. It is usual for an individual consultation meeting to be arranged at any point during the consultation period, or if you have any specific issues.

Will we be able to meet with the Trust prior to a transfer taking place?

As part of the consultation process there is a requirement for staff to meet with the new employer. It is usual for the Trust to be invited to one of your TUPE meetings.

What are measures?

An example of a measure is a change to your pay date. If the Trust proposes any measures, you will be consulted with regarding these. A reasonable consultation period will be allowed.

Do our job descriptions need amending?

Job descriptions will transfer as part of terms and conditions. They will only need to be amended if they need updating.

Will staff be issued with new contracts?

No, staff will be issued with a variation to contract letter if there are any new measures e.g., confirming the change of pay date to the last working day of the month. They will be issued with a Trust welcome letter.

Do our current terms and conditions remain the same as with our current employer? If so, how long for?

Terms and conditions are protected upon conversion through TUPE. There is no intention for staff terms and conditions to be changed in the immediate future however, if the Trust wanted to make changes this would need to be consulted on and negotiated with employees in line with policy and legislation. Any employer could make changes to terms and conditions.

What terms and conditions will be protected under the TUPE transfer and for how long will they be protected?

Contractual terms and conditions are protected under TUPE for example pay, annual leave, sickness. In terms of how long for, they would remain in place unless the Trust consulted with you to change them. It is the intention that HR policies and procedures will apply to you going forward. That does not affect your contractual entitlements.

Do we still have the same annual leave entitlement, bank holidays, and concessionary or additional days leave given during the Christmas period?

Annual leave is contractual, therefore will transfer with you.

Where will I be located?

You will remain working at your current school.

What will happen about any travel claims and/or expenses that we need to submit to our current employer before we transfer?

Your current employer will notify you or arrangements to input claims before your transfer including all timesheets/overtime/etc.

Will I need to print off all my payslips prior to the transfer date?

Your current employer will confirm arrangements for this.

What if I don’t want to transfer?

Your role with the school will end on the transfer date and you will be transferred to the Trust. You can choose to seek another role outside of the school, but we cannot guarantee being able to offer you another position. You can choose not to join the Trust, and if you do so you will be effectively resigning from your position and will not be eligible for a redundancy payment.

What can I do if I don’t think that my post should be in scope to transfer?

If you believe that your post should not be considered as part of the TUPE transfer, then you should raise this as soon as possible with your Line Manager. A one-to-one meeting can then be arranged to discuss this further.

I am in my probationary period, what does this mean for me?

Your probationary period will continue as normal and any outstanding review meetings will be undertaken by the Trust.

I am on a temporary contract, what will this mean for me?

It is most likely to continue to its end date. The Trust will meet you and confirm if there will be a position for you in the new structure.

I am off sick, what will this mean for me?

The Trust will be advised that you are sick. You will be invited to a meeting to discuss the transfer and the Trust will look to support you back to work if you have not returned by the date of transfer.

I am pregnant/on maternity leave, what will this mean for me?

The transfer will not affect your maternity pay and benefits. You will be invited to meet with the Trust who will confirm maternity leave dates and your role when you return.

What will the Trust’s position be on salary scales moving forward?

On the transfer the Trust will adopt your current salary scales, which we are committed to retaining for both teachers and support staff. Moving forward these will be decided upon by our Trustees. We currently adopt rates specified by the School Teachers Pay & Conditions Document (STPCD) for teaching staff and National Joint Council (NJC) Green Book for Associate staff.

Can pay scales be changed?

The MAT is committed to current staff terms and conditions. Any employer could change these, but this would have to be for an Economical, Technical or Organisational (ETO) reason, and whilst the scale could change, pay could not be decreased. TLRs can be removed however but only after 3 years.

When will salary reviews/increases be undertaken?

This will be decided by the Trustees and will remain in-line with current performance management cycles.

Will the Trust’s salary increases be in-line with the Government’s?

Yes, the Trust is committed to observing national pay and conditions, including salary increases.

How will my pension be affected by the transfer?

The Trust is a recognised Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) employer in its own right. All members of staff will remain members of the LGPS and the Teachers’ Pension schemes, with the same benefits and contributions.

Will the Trust continue to offer both the LGPS and the TPS for transferring staff

Legislation places a statutory duty on academies and free schools to offer the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS) to all teaching staff and the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) to non-teaching staff. These requirements are repeated in the model Funding Agreement. On conversion the Trust will automatically become a scheduled body in the LGPS. The Trust, as an employer, will also register with the TPS in order that they can administer the scheme in respect of their employees.

Can the MAT make future changes to the pension scheme and rates of contributions?

No. Contribution rates and bands are part of legislation. The Trust will be responsible for on-going liabilities for the pension fund.

What if the Trust gets into financial difficulties in the future? Who will be responsible for any potential deficit? Is there a central ‘pot’ of money either from local or central government that would cover such an eventuality?

The Department for Education are ultimately responsible if an academy fails and there is a deficit to be recovered. The Department for Education would protect the pension rights for the employees of any academy that got into financial difficulty.

Would pensions transfer if I moved to a new MAT/maintained school at a later date?

Yes, staff will remain members of the LGPS and Teachers’ pension schemes, entitlements and benefits remain the same.

Will our pension contributions stay the same or alter?

Your contributions won’t change unless your pay changes in the future (as is the case for maintained schools).

Now or in the future could an academy/free school ever opt out of the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS) or Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) and offer different ones?

Academies and free schools cannot opt out of the TPS or the LGPS. It is a statutory requirement for employers to provide access to these pension schemes.

If I ever moved to a school not offering the TPS/LGPS would my years of service still count?

All schools (including free schools and academies) have to offer the TPS and LGPS. Only private schools can opt not to offer this. If you were to leave the academy your pension benefits (if you have over 2 years’ pensionable service,) will be frozen and increased in-line with the consumer price index (this applies to both the LGPS and TPS).

Will I still receive pension statements?


If I leave the Trust and take up a position at another school, will my service be continuous?

Maintained schools and academies are associated employers for the purposes of redundancy payments, therefore your service for the calculation of any redundancy payment will be based on all your continuous service.

If I transferred to another MAT or school at a later date, would my terms and conditions transfer across again?


How will my entitlement to maternity/paternity/adoption benefits be affected?

On transfer to the Trust your entitlement to maternity, paternity and adoption benefits will transfer with you. You will not have to work a further minimum period to be entitled to these benefits. If you return to a maintained school or another academy, you will need to satisfy the qualification requirements to receive occupational maternity, paternity, or adoption benefits. This means that you would need to check with the new employer what if any occupational maternity/paternity/adoption benefits are available and how you qualify for them.

Will service length still be recognised if an employee were to transfer from the Trust to another MAT/maintained school?

Yes, all schools and academies are associated employers, and length of service will still be recognised for redundancy purposes.

Will long service awards still apply?

The Trust will replicate the long service award.

Will I receive a P45?

Your P45 will be sent directly to the Trust as part of the transfer. You will not receive a copy.

Who do I contact with questions?

You can contact the HR department of your current employer with TUPE questions. You are also welcome to contact the Trust HR department with any specific questions about Trust terms and conditions or HR policies. Their email address is [email protected].

Still have a burning question for us?