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2 min read

Case Win: Resolving Workplace Injustice

How TPAA Safeguarded a Members’ Professional Reputation in Education

Education is one industry where employees can really get the short end of the stick; an unfair or unjust workplace result can follow you around for a whole career. Having a case manager on your team and in your corner can be crucial to the outcome.

This case study will focus on a case handled by a senior case manager named Natasha who assisted one of our members in navigating a complex situation, enabling the member to have a record of termination removed from her employment record.

Note: this case is unrelated to any child safety matter. 

The Employee's Challenge:

  • The TPA member worked at a high school, they faced unexpected allegations of breach of the code of conduct and poor performance.
  • These allegations were issued without prior warnings or opportunities for improvement.
  • The situation became more complex when new allegations were added in a subsequent meeting.
  • The employee was immediately dismissed.

Case Manager's Intervention:

  • The case manager recognized the need for intervention.
  • Determined that unfair dismissal was likely due to the lack of procedural fairness.
  • Reached out to the school to challenge the dismissal, citing several factors:
    • Absence of a support person during the first meeting.
    • Historical nature of the allegations.
    • Lack of prior warnings.
    • Limited time given to respond.

Resolution without Legal Action:

Although we recommended taking the case further, our member did not seek reinstatement or compensation (due to the mistreatment). Instead, they wanted the dismissal to be changed to a resignation and obtain a statement of service. The case manager drafted a Deed of Release and Settlement, proposing a resignation and statement of service to the school. The school agreed to sign the deed, changing the termination to a resignation. The employee received a statement of service and was very satisfied with the outcome. Importantly, this case was resolved without the need for an unfair dismissal application.

In conclusion, this case exemplifies the vital role a case manager can play in achieving fair outcomes for employees. By intervening promptly and effectively, the case manager was able to convert a potentially damaging dismissal into a resignation, thus preserving the dignity and professional reputation of the employee. 
Furthermore, the matter was resolved without the need for a potentially stressful and time-consuming unfair dismissal application. This case serves as a testament to the impact of effective case management in upholding the workplace rights of TPAA members and all education workers.

How is the TPAA so effective in defending members during workplace issues and disputes? Our experienced and professional case managers use our unique RED TM case resolution system.

Why is the TPAA different? We believe that real change in education STARTS with empowering frontline teachers, not bureaucrats. 

If you are a member of TPAA and need assistance with a workplace issue, please submit a member support ticket on your dashboard, or contact us on 1300 252 777 - hotline@tpaa.asn.au 

To find out more about TPAA and become protected today visit: https://tpaa.redunion.com.au/join