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Departmental Absenteeism

Children, Schools and Families written question – answered on 11th March 2009.

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Photo of Greg Hands Greg Hands Shadow Minister (Treasury)

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many staff of his Department were recorded absent for non-medical reasons on (a) 2 February 2009 and (b) 3 February 2009; what estimate he has made of the (i) cost to his Department and (ii) number of working hours lost due to such absence; and what guidance his Department issued to staff in respect of absence on these days.

Photo of Sarah McCarthy-Fry Sarah McCarthy-Fry Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Schools and Learners), Department for Children, Schools and Families

The Department issued guidance to staff on the days in question, advising them to make reasonable efforts to come into work and, if this was not possible, to work from home using, for example, the Department's remote access. Staff were also told to also take account of local advice in the light of weather conditions and travel arrangements.

Absences were handled locally by managers and information was not collected centrally on those unable to work. Therefore, the information on staff numbers, costs and working hours lost could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

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