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Teacher wins claim over dismissal caused by salary increase

A teacher who claimed she was forced out of her job because she had reached the top of her salary scale and become too expensive has won her claim of unfair dismissal.

The teacher told the Employment Tribunal that after she had entered a high salary band due to her length of service, she was subjected to capability assessments. She believed the assessments were merely a ploy to pressurise her into resigning.

She did eventually resign claiming unfair constructive dismissal. She also claimed she had been subjected to age discrimination on the grounds that older teachers were the ones most likely to reach the higher salary range and so be subjected to capability assessments.

The tribunal found in her favour on both counts and awarded her compensation.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) upheld the unfair constructive dismissal claim saying the evidence showed that the school’s conduct amounted to a repudiatory breach of contract.

However, the EAT overturned the decision that she had been subjected to age discrimination because there was insufficient evidence to show that the school had a consistent practice of dismissing older teachers once they reached the higher salary band.

The school’s appeal to have the compensation award reduced was dismissed.

Please contact us if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of employment law.