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Additional resourcing packages — Unexpected staffing costs procedure

Version number 1.1 | Version effective 16 December 2020
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Additional resourcing packages — Unexpected staffing costs procedure

Audience

All Queensland State schools, regionally-based staff and central office functions involved in the allocation and management of school staffing resources.

Purpose

This procedure sets out the roles, responsibilities and processes for the assessment and possible approval for additional resourcing packages for schools arising from unexpected additional staffing costs.

Overview

Principals may apply for additional resourcing when their school experiences financial distress caused by the cost of replacing classroom teachers in notionally allocated positions who are absent on short-term leave. 

Additional resourcing is available to help support schools when, after all reasonable management action has been taken and available staffing resources have been exhausted, the cost of replacing classroom teachers in notionally allocated full-time equivalent (FTE) positions who are on short-term leave has placed the school in financial distress and at risk of not being able to meet its financial obligations.

Assessment for this additional resourcing occurs in Term 1 of each calendar year to help replace un-budgeted staffing costs incurred in the immediately preceding calendar year that the school has sourced from cash reserves and other activities.

Additional resourcing approved may be in the form of notionally allocated classroom teacher positions (from central office or regional additional allocation pools) and/or an appropriation.

Any additional notionally allocated resourcing is provided for one year only and may not be converted to cash for use in a subsequent year.

TRACER is the approved system for the recording of replacement of notionally allocated classroom teachers on short-term leave. Only schools using TRACER will be eligible for an additional resourcing package.

The School Budget Solution (SBS) is the approved system for the recording and conversion of unused staffing credits. Schools must have a confirmed staffing profile in the SBS to be eligible for an additional resourcing package.

Responsibilities

The principal

  • manage all resources (including staffing and financial) provided to the school
  • ensure compliance with legislative, industrial and policy and procedural requirements
  • establish school leadership teams as required to advise on school management matters and help implement appropriate management practices across the school.

Regional Finance teams

  • provide advice and guidance to regional and school leadership teams on financial management, including in relation to managing resources provided to schools as cash to ensure replacement of classroom teachers absent on short-term leave
  • analyse the overall financial operations of each school that applies for an additional resourcing package
  • provide the regional director with advice regarding whether the school is experiencing financial distress as a result of the replacement of notionally-allocated classroom teachers on short-term leave.

Regional Human Resources (HR) teams

  • provide advice and guidance to regional and school leadership teams around efficient and effective staffing resource management, including compliance with all legislative, industrial and policy requirements
  • ensure Regional Directors are informed of staffing resourcing use by schools and instances when a school might require additional support
  • analyse the overall staffing management within each school that applies for an additional resourcing package
  • ensure schools appropriately and accurately record all staffing resource use
  • ensure the school has a confirmed staffing profile within the SBS in the period additional resources are claimed
  • provide details about each school’s management of its staffing resourcing and any FTE-to-cash conversion.

Regional director

  • monitor the total regional consumption of notionally-allocated staffing resources by schools in terms of FTE positions and the financial impact of decisions concerning these resources 
  • endorse applications from principals when a school has met the requirements for an additional resourcing package
  • establish regional leadership teams as required to advise on school resource management matters and help implement appropriate staffing and financial management practices across the region.

Central office HR

  • develop, maintain and make available a tool that can analyse TRACER and SBS information, calculate internal relief adjustments and generate an additional resourcing package application for principals 
  • determine when applications for additional resourcing packages must be submitted during Term 1 of each school year and communicate this date to regional teams and school-based staff
  • collate and present all applications endorsed by the regional director for consideration by the School Financial Resourcing Advisory Group (SFRAG)
  • distribute any approved additional resources and make available information about applications for additional resource packages to business units within the department
  • manage TRACER, including providing reports to schools detailing the consumption of TRS-SSE for classroom teachers against notionally allocated positions only
  • manage the SBS, including making clear for principals and school leadership teams the status of the school staffing profile and credits and usage associated with staffing resourcing entitlements.

School Financial Resourcing Advisory Group (SFRAG)

  • consider for approval all regionally-endorsed applications from principals for additional resource packages
  • identify the source of funding for approved additional resource packages, which might include a component of the existing school-based salaries budget, as approved by the relevant business owner, or as a result of a budget adjustment approved by the Executive Management Board (EMB).

Process

  1. Throughout the school year, school leadership teams use the TRACER system to record replacement of short-term absences involving centrally-funded classroom teachers.
  2. During Term 1 school leadership teams access TRACER reports to evaluate whether the previous year’s TRS-SSE usage for notionally-allocated classroom teachers is greater than the TRS-SSE appropriated amount in that year. The costs of replacing school-funded classroom teachers are outside the scope for consideration and for partially-funded teachers the TRS-SSE usage is calculated as a pro rata reflecting only the notionally-allocated incumbency. 
  3. At this time school leadership teams also access SBS reports for their end-of-year credits and usage position for the previous year, including previous conversion of any unused credits.
  4. School leadership teams input both TRACER and SBS report information about teacher replacements into the tool for determining additional resource use and produce the application.
  5. Before the agreed submission date, the principal submits the application to the regional Finance teams for analysis of the fiscal impact of the additional expenditure required to engage staffing resources on the current adjusted budget. 
  6. Regional Finance teams provide advice throughout the year on the fiscal management of the school, including whether it is experiencing financial distress.  To be in financial distress, the principal must demonstrate that the additional cost of replacing notionally-allocated classroom teachers has had a material impact (greater than 10%) on the current adjusted budget.
  7. Regional Finance teams confirm the financial implications of the application and provide it to the regional HR team to confirm staffing information. Advice for the regional director is also formulated to provide additional information or clarification if requested when considering the application.
  8. Regional HR teams confirm the TRACER and SBS information contained in the application and provide the Application to the regional director for endorsement.
  9. The regional director may seek advice from any source when considering whether or not to endorse the application, which is then forwarded to central office HR.
  10. Central office HR records all applications and submits to SFRAG for consideration.
  11. During Term 2, SFRAG considers applications for approval, decides outcomes and identifies the type (notional and/or cash) and source (school-based salaries budget or EMB approval) of additional resources for approved applications.
  12. During Term 2, central office HR advises schools of SFRAG’s decision on their application and distributes any approved additional resources to schools.
  13. During Term 2, central office HR makes available information about all applications and decisions about applications for additional resourcing to areas of the department including the region, State Schools Division and the School Improvement Unit.

Definitions

Term

Definition

Allocated classroom teacher

An allocated classroom teacher is a resource that is allocated to the school through the annual staffing allocation models and costs are budgeted for within the school-based salaries cost centre or is a resource that has been re-allocated to a school by either regional or central office or another school.

Centrally-funded positions

Centrally-funded positions are allocated or re-allocated directly to the school. Funding for these positions is mostly held centrally. A Teacher Relief Scheme (TRS) provision is budgeted each year and paid to the school to help meet short-term classroom teacher absence costs.

School-funded positions

School-funded positions, including classroom positions, are ones that are established by the school and all costs associated with the employment of staff members in those positions must be met by the school. The school payments for these positions include calculated on-costs that are designed to meet leave, superannuation and other indirect employee costs. School payments for school-funded positions cease when the staff member is absent, enabling the school to use those funds to employ a replacement. Payments are managed through a funding recoveries process whereby monies owing for staff payments are transferred from the school bank account to central holdings.

Regional leadership teams

Regional leadership teams are established by regional directors to help make decisions about how schools in the region are supported and supervision is provided. These teams may include involvement by assistant regional directors, senior officers, regional administrative staff members and regionally-based corporate services staff members.

School leadership teams

School leadership teams are established by the principal to assist in the management of all resources available to the school. These teams may involve classified teachers, classroom teachers, administrative staff members and teacher aides.

Regional additional allocations

A regionally based pool of additional notional staffing resources which can be provided to schools experiencing financial distress.  These allocations are for one calendar year only.

TRACER

TRACER is a service provided by the department that helps schools effectively manage their teaching workforce by sourcing and booking replacement teachers.

TRS–SSE

Teacher Relief Scheme – Sick Special Emergent (TRS–SSE) is the appropriation budgeted for and paid directly to schools for them to fund the replacement of centrally funded classroom teachers when other internal arrangements are unavailable.

School Financial Resourcing Advisory Group (SFRAG)

This body is responsible for the consideration and possible approval of endorsed Applications for Additional Resourcing Packages.

Legislation

Delegations/Authorisations

Other resources

Superseded versions

Previous seven years shown. Minor version updates not included.

1.0 Additional resourcing packages – Unexpected staffing costs

Review date

15 February 2022
Attribution CC BY

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