Stress or mental health cover
Teaching is a stressful job at the best of times, what with monitoring the safety of pupils and managing their behaviour, combined with increasing pressure to improve grades, budget cuts, fewer staff and bigger classes. But when pupils aren’t behaving, workloads are building and results aren’t being achieved, stress can begin to take its toll.
The individual teacher is not the only one to suffer when stress levels get too high. Colleagues who may have to provide assistance and support, pupils who are being taught by someone who is unwell, and headteachers or bursars who have to manage the operational and financial impact of the sickness absence, all feel the impact.
Every year 3.7% of teachers and 3.0% of support staff take an absence due to stress or a mental health issue. This equates to 16% of all absence days within schools.
As with all absence types, stress is unpredictable and can happen at any time. However, the average length of a stress related absence is more than twice as long as any other absence cause, with the exception of maternity. These long-term stress-related absences are becoming increasingly frequent within schools, with 3,750 teachers signed off on long-term sick leave because of the pressure of work, anxiety or mental illness in the last year alone.
Such is the prevalence of stress within schools that steps should be taken to offer staff pastoral support wherever possible to limit the risk of stress occurring or reduce the effects of stress.
Schools also need to accept that stress related absences are inevitable and whilst they can be reduced, they can’t be eliminated. Therefore, it is vital to plan and budget for stress related absences by putting appropriate contingencies in place.
Our solution - Choose between 30 or 190 days of stress cover
A great way to protect your school against the increasing risk of stress related absences is by adding cover for these to your staff absence insurance policy. As standard, we allow you to choose between 0, 30 and 190 days of stress cover. However if you need a more specific level of stress cover, please get in touch and we will be happy to arrange this for you.
Once you’re covered, in the event that a member of staff is absent from work as a result of stress or mental illness, our insurance will pay you a fixed amount after the waiting day period. This will provide you with the financial capacity to cover the costs incurred by the absence, minimising the impact it has on your school’s operations and staffing budget.