Holiday Pay for Supply Teachers

Holiday pay for supply teachers

Are supply teachers entitled to holiday pay? While pupils and permanent staff look forward to the school holidays, for supply teachers they often come with added financial pressure. The one real downside to supply work is that you only get paid when you’re actually working, which can make for difficulties when schools are closed.

Many see this as a fair exchange for the flexibility and variety offered by supply, and experienced supply teachers are used to saving for time off. However, many supply teachers are not aware that they may be entitled to paid holiday.

If you’re employed by an umbrella company, you’re a permanent employee and your umbrella employer has to pay you for holiday.

How much holiday pay are supply teachers entitled to?

If you work full time for a full year, you’re entitled to 28 days paid holiday, and employers will usually include the 8 annual bank holidays. If you work less than a full year, or you don’t work full time, you’ll be entitled to paid holiday on a pro-rata basis.

How does holiday pay work for supply teachers?

There are two possible models that your umbrella employer might use; accrued and advanced holiday pay. If you’re not sure which one is being used, check with your umbrella company so you know what’s happening and what to expect.

Accrued holiday pay:  This is where your holiday pay is not paid until you ask for it. Your umbrella employer will hold on to it, and will expect you to claim it when you’ve had time off. Make sure you know the details of your umbrella’s policy, as you might lose your entitlement if you don’t claim it within a specific time.

Advanced holiday pay: This is where your holiday pay is paid in each payment, rather than accruing. You should see a specific entry for holiday pay on your payslip, so you know how much of each payment was for holiday. You will have to make your own provision for time off.

As part of our commitment to openness and flexibility, Orange Genie Education allow supply teachers to choose whether to accrue paid holiday or have it paid in each payment. If you choose not to accrue it, we strongly advise you to put money aside to cover time off. Accrued holiday pay will never be lost if left unclaimed.

When is the best time to claim holiday pay?

The main thing to remember here is that your holiday pay is intended to help you cover time off. If you have accrued holiday, we’d always advise you to claim it in a week when you’re not getting any other payments, because that’s what it’s for. If you do claim it in a week when you also receive a salary payment, you might find that you pay more tax and national insurance that week, as your taxable earnings will be higher.

If you have questions about this issue, or if Orange Genie can help in any way, please contact our expert team on 01296 468483 or email

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