The Maternity Leave Policy outlines the benefits offered by the university for prospective mothers. All employees are eligible for 52 weeks maternity leave irrespective of their length of service or hours of work. Depending on length of service, prospective mothers may be eligible for the University's enhanced maternity pay package of 16 weeks full salary.
Keeping in touch days
These allow you to work for up to 10 days (and be paid for it!) during your maternity leave i.e. they can effectively extend your 16 weeks of additional pay to 18 weeks. In theory, the application is straightforward and detailed half way down the Maternity Leave Policy . However, please be aware that you will not be paid for these additional days should you take them during the 16 week period of additional maternity pay, unless you speak to HR to arrange them first. This is not detailed on their webpages, and learnt only from experience!
Staff on permanent contracts
It should be a straightforward matter to arrange maternity/shared parental leave with HR. If you are in any doubt, please speak to a member of the E&D committee, or the Head of School. If you are currently part-funded by a grant from an external body (e.g. Royal Society, ERC) you should also contact your grant agency to find out what arrangements they have in place. In the case of an ERC grant, a no-cost extension of the length of your maternity/shared-parental leave should be granted. FAS has experience asking for these, please speak to them.
Staff on short-term contracts (e.g. post-docs)
In order to support the careers of contract research staff who take maternity leave while employed on a fixed term contract, the School has developed guidance and procedures for CRS contract extensions following a period of maternity leave.
When the line manager is first notified that a member of contract research staff is pregnant and intends to request maternity leave, the line manager should contact FAS and HR to identify what resources are available within their research grant(s) plus additional financial support from the research funder to accommodate a period of maternity leave. For example, EPSRC and STFC offer additional funds for the maternity leave of CRS and PhD students as detailed here. The line manager should then meet with the Head of School to formulate a funding plan, which should subsequently be clearly explained to the employee.
The School expects that the research staff member’s contract should normally be extended by the duration of the maternity leave, assuming grant funding is available. This extension should be put in place at the time that an application for maternity leave is approved by HR. Where the funding end date does not allow for this length of extension, the grant holder should aim to extend the employment contract end date as far as possible from external funding. The School will underwrite three months of salary to address a shortfall in grant funding in cases where the extended contract is for less than 12 months beyond the end date of the requested maternity leave.
The University is committed to accommodating appropriate adjustments to postgraduate research students to support them in their studies due to pregnancy or adoption of a child. To this end, the University allows research students to take parental leave during the course of their PhD, as detailed here.
For students whose stipend comes from UK research councils, or from the University, they are entitled to 6 months paid parental leave. Wherever possible, the School will try to match these arrangements for PhD students with other funding sources.
Information for RCUK funded students (e.g. STFC, EPSRC, NERC) can be found in the same document as for research staff here
Please talk to the ASC. Some limited information can be found here