Leave arrangements

Annual leave 

We offer a generous annual leave entitlement of 26 days, increasing to 31 days after five years’ service (excluding teachers & youth workers) with a pro rata entitlement for part time workers.

Buy extra holiday

You can buy extra holiday through our popular holiday purchase scheme. This holiday can be taken at any point during the annual leave year - for any reason. The salary deductions are taken in 12 equal monthly instalments.

The holiday purchase scheme is offered on annual basis but if you miss the deadline you can also request unpaid leave at any time throughout the year on an ad-hoc pay as you go basis.

Bank holidays

Everyone is paid for the 8 bank holidays at your normal rate of pay. Part time employees or anyone with compressed working patterns will have an adjustment made to their annual leave, to account for where bank holidays fall in their working pattern, and to make sure paid time off is distributed fairly and consistently across the workforce.

Flexible working

We believe that people do their best work if we make it easier for them to meet their personal responsibilities. We promote and support flexible and part time working requests to allow you to balance work and life.

Other paid leave provisions 

We also offer a range of paid and unpaid leave provision to support you to carry out a range of important and valuable public duties which support our communities such as:

  • school governor or member of another public body,
  • attending court or undertaking jury service duties,
  • volunteer reservist,
  • retained firefighter
  • helping with our election processes. 

Compassionate leave

To support you during those most difficult times, our compassionate leave provisions offer up to 10 working days’ paid leave per year which can be accessed in a range of circumstances such as serious illness, bereavement or significant home emergency situations. 

Family friendly and carer policies

In helping support you to balance home and work lives, we have a range of policies and practices which, in many cases, goes beyond the statutory entitlement including:

  • generous maternity leave and pay,
  • paternity leave,
  • shared parental leave
  • adoption leave and pay.

If you’re an approved foster carer or shared lives carer (for Dorset Council) you can also request time off as paid leave to help you with some of the time commitment needed to carry out this important role.

Career breaks

A career break is a period of unpaid time out of the workplace. The minimum period of a career break will normally be three months and the maximum period two years. You can request a career break in circumstances such as to care for a dependant; to undertake further education; to travel or to carry out voluntary work.

Online discounts and salary sacrifice schemes

You will also have access to the Wider Wallet benefits hub. This is a private discount and benefits package offering a wide range of better-than-public deals such as downloadable vouchers, discounted gift vouchers and online discounts on a wide range of websites.

The portal also provides access to our salary sacrifice schemes for Additional Voluntary pension Contributions (AVCs), cars and workplace bikes. 

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