HR Services

Mediation

Mediation at a Primary School in Tameside

The following case study is a testimonial authored by a headteacher from a primary school in Tameside.

"I decided to source mediation when it became clear that some long-standing issues between a small number of my staff team had begun to surface again and were making the working environment very uncomfortable for all concerned. I knew that I couldn’t allow things to carry on as they were but felt loathed to jump straight to formal procedures such as a disciplinary or grievance. I read up on what mediation involved and felt that it could potentially be a way to resolve the issues once and for all, showing my staff that I am invested in their well-being and professional relationships but also giving me the opportunity to say ‘enough is enough’.

We contacted our Local Authority HR department but unfortunately they didn’t offer a mediation service. Luckily my Business Manager had heard about One Education by word of mouth; a school in our local cluster had started to use them for HR services. So we contacted them to see if they offered the service, and they did.

The process itself was well organised and smooth. Karen, our mediator was great and put everyone involved at ease. The sessions are confidential which I think helped my staff to really say what they needed to and the fact that they were talking to an independent, third-party helped with that openness too.

Since the sessions things have improved greatly within the team. They have a set of agreements from which to work and have all been able to contribute in drawing those up. Now that they have all had the opportunity to express their feelings and openly discuss their issues it feels as though the air has been cleared and they are now all able (and willing) to get on with their jobs and work together professionally. 

As the senior leader in the organisation, I have also benefitted enormously from the process as although not personally involved, it has meant that significantly less of my time is now taken up with dealing with individual staff members and constantly trying to come up with solutions to everybody’s individual issues. It has made the workplace a much happier and more pleasant place to be for all staff, not just those directly involved and has meant that we can get back to focusing on our core business.

I would urge any school leaders that are considering mediation as a way forward or are considering using One Education to go for it! It has been money very well spent for us and I would definitely use this approach and this company again in the future."