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Daughter lost her apprenticeship

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Hi everyone, looking for some advice

My daughter started an apprenticeship in hairdressing in September and was today dismissed on the spot.

She was told it was because the employer had had 2 complaints from clients that she hadn't shampooed their hair correctly, but this was the first she had heard about it.

Naturally she is very upset. I called the employer and politely asked why and was told that she didn't do what she was asked, and he had had these complaints from clients.

I spoke with my daughter who said the employer gave her a list of things to do in the morning, so she would start the task, then someone would call her away to sweep up, or make tea etc, so the tasks she had been given originally wouldn't be completed so he would tell her off.

He also said he had gone over and over the shampooing procedure with her, but she tells me he showed her once, and once only.

She is 16 and she does have some learning problems, this was brought to the attention of the college, so they were fully aware of her needing a little extra support and guidance. She also tells me that a girl who is permanently employed there has been making fun of her and generally being mean. I brought this up with the employer and he said "well its just banter".

Can they dismiss her like this? I can't get hold of the tutor until Monday, but naturally i am not very happy at all and wonder if there is anything I can do? She doesn't want to go back to the salon, but she dearly wants to carry on with the course. Thanks in advance

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in short, no but the penalty for doing so is very limited. Speak to her college and look at the apprenticeship she signed up to, the college has an interest in this and the employer gets paid for taking on apprentices so they may well get a visit from someone at whatever govt dept covers this if the complaint is serious enough. I would also mention the workplace bullying, there is no such thing as "banter".

The college may well be able to find her another placement. Your daughter will be owed some money for the unlawful dismissal, notice pay, holiday pay etc so the former will be a couple of weeks pay, the latter about 10% of her pay since she started work.

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in short, no but the penalty for doing so is very limited. Speak to her college and look at the apprenticeship she signed up to, the college has an interest in this and the employer gets paid for taking on apprentices so they may well get a visit from someone at whatever govt dept covers this if the complaint is serious enough. I would also mention the workplace bullying, there is no such thing as "banter".

The college may well be able to find her another placement. Your daughter will be owed some money for the unlawful dismissal, notice pay, holiday pay etc so the former will be a couple of weeks pay, the latter about 10% of her pay since she started work.

 

Thank you for the response. When you say no, is that no they cannot dismiss her like this or no there is nothing we can do? Im not sure what we need to do next other than contact the college. She is supposed to be working tomorrow and Monday but as she has been dismissed she won;t be! How do we go about finding out what she is owed? Thanks again.

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the other thing is, she was never given a contract of any kind regarding the apprenticeship, but she has some wage slips.

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Awful, I hope they do not destroy her confidence.

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Be prepared for a defensive attitude from everybody – including the college, even though the college is meant to be on her side. The college will want to become defensive because eventually this will suggest inadequate preparation, scrutiny of potential employers and inadequate care of their own students for whom they are responsible.

 

I think that you need to emphasise the bullying aspect. I don't know if it is still possible but I would suggest trying to have some phone calls with the employer – but make sure those calls are recorded. Try to bring the conversation around to the "banter" and see if you can get that repeated again. I completely agree with the above comment that there is no such thing as banter. The other kind of thing that you hear sometimes – especially in schools – is that this kind of behaviour is character forming and produces strong individuals. This is not true. Bullying produces uncertain and unconfident individuals who then have difficulty functioning socially.

 

We need to be speaking to the college about the lack of training, the bullying (always use that word – even if they try to move away from it) and the lack of supervision and scrutiny from the college.

 

You should be able to get some kind of money pay out as has been suggested above – but it won't be very substantial. The best thing that you can hope for from the college is a new placement as quickly as possible in order to build up her confidence and to undo the damage that she has experienced in her first placement. I suppose that this should be your first priority and I suppose that if the college can do this for you then it might be best to settle for that as it has a far longer term benefit for your daughter than the bit of money that she might put in her pocket as a settlement for this episode.

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How much pay? well 2 weeks in lieu of notice and then 10% of the hours actually worked (not college days) and that will be at her hourly rate for holiday pay. You can go to a tribunal to recover this but county court small claims is better and cheaper. Again, let the college know that she has been short changed and they may well speal to the employer and twist their arm a bit so you dont have to do court. As she is 16 you have the authority to act on her behalf so they cant fob you off and say they wont talk to you for "data protection" reasons.

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Thank you for the replies. I will speak to the college on Monday, but as BankFodder says I feel they will close ranks on this one. She hasn't been given a proper chance, she's 16 and an apprentice and I believe if she wasn't good at something she should have been taught the right way, and he also dismissed her on her college tutors day off and without discussing it with my daughter or the college first. It's also come to light that the guy who owns the place was also supposed to go through a number of things H&S etc and she never had any of that apart from "the fire exit is the front door and back door" - not good enough IMHO. It HAS dented her confidence somewhat, she is a shy girl and would rarely speak up if someone was mean towards her, and she does not want to go back to that salon (neither would I to be fair).

I will see what happens on Monday. She is now worried she won;t be able to finish her apprenticeship, but I beleive she has a right to do so at another salon? Thanks again guys, you are brilliant!

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I think they will try and find her an alternative as otherwise they lose money if your daughter drops out of the course and you explain to the training board, local council etc why this is and the failure of the college itself to properly manage things. Apprenticeships are not like ordinary jobs, there are fairly strict conditions that all parties have to adhere to and the employer may be liable for a lot more than just a couple of weeks pay.

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Thank you. I have spoken with the college today who, of course closed ranks. I voiced my concerns re: the placement. I was told that my daughter has been struggling with the theory side of things (I was not aware of this) and that they had arranged a dyslexia test for tomorrow (again, I was not aware of this).

It was also suggested that she does not continue with the apprenticeship, rather she goes on the level 1 course which starts in January so she can gain some confidence. This means full time in college with no work based experience, then, if she passes that, she can go onto the apprenticeship.

I am not overly thrilled at this as this is what we wanted her to do in the first place, but were told she would be fine on the apprenticeship and the college actively encouraged us this was the right thing to do. I was also informed that all apprentices are taken on on a 3 month trial basis - something again we were not aware of and have no contract to say this is the case.

She has been paid a weeks wage today too so that is something. I'm still not happy at their treatment of her, but I don;t think there is much else I can do.

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Go to your MP and report the college and employer to the disability rights discrimination organisation. I am sure this will destroy any confidence your daughter has and both the college and employer need exposed and reprimanded IMO.

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you seem to accept any amount of compost thrown at you so when are you going to start telling these people they are in the wrong rather than just accepting their word for things? Get hold of the apprenticeship papers signed and read them properly.

 

You will probably need to follow a grievance procedure for the college so ask them for it (not the tutors, ask the admissions office) Write to the ex-employer and give them nitice that theym should pay the full amount due ( work it out by looking up the re4quired notice period and add the holiday pay as calculated by number of hours worked) and give them 14 days to pay up or say why they dont have to obey the law in the same way as every other employer in the country does.

 

If they still fail to pay up you sned them a letter before action telling them how much is owed and that they have another fortnigh to cough up or you will sue and all costs will be added to the bill or no settlement accepted.

 

Also, do as warrenb says, get another letter sent to the Principal of the college demanding to know what they have done to make suitable and reasonable adjustments for your daughters disability under the Equalities Act. Mkae sure the college boss knows that you aren taking the matter further and will involve the local education autority, yur MP and the press if need be

Edited by honeybee13
Paras.

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My daughter asked for them on Tuesday and was told that they couldnt lay their hands on them just yet as they were in another department. I am going to wait until Tuesday next week to see if she is given them, if not I will go down the grievance route and follow all your advice, for which I wholeheartedly thank you all :-D

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Goff, you appear a very calm person, this should be making your blood boil as it annoys me and I don't even know you nor your daughter.

 

Just tell yourself that you owe it to your daughter and other people discriminated against!

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Goff, you appear a very calm person, this should be making your blood boil as it annoys me and I don't even know you nor your daughter.

 

Just tell yourself that you owe it to your daughter and other people discriminated against!

 

lol I wish!!! I was fuming on Friday and all over the weekend, but I have to keep calm until i have everything I need to throw at them!

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Id be on to them every day and confirm the request in writing every day, copied to the college principal (but not as a grievance yet). Give them nowhere to go with their excuses so when you do make a formal complaint they cant suddenly say they didnt know about it.

.

My daughter asked for them on Tuesday and was told that they couldnt lay their hands on them just yet as they were in another department. I am going to wait until Tuesday next week to see if she is given them, if not I will go down the grievance route and follow all your advice, for which I wholeheartedly thank you all :-D

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OK, so we have further developments.

 

My daughter asked last week for a copy of the contract and was told it was in another department so "they couldn't lay their hands on it at the moment". I also asked for a copy of the original application form and enrolment forms.

 

Today I have texted the tutor and asked for it and was told they don't have one, it would be the salon, and that I, as a parent had a legal responsibility to tell the salon of my daughters needs! Now correct me f I am wrong but surely that is the college's responsibility to ensure students are placed where sufficient learning support is given???

 

I rang her school last week and asked for the SENCO report, and also again today as no one has called me back, so I am waiting for a call about it.

 

I'm fuming. Where do I go from here now? Should I go straight for the jugular and onto a solicitor?

 

PS: Im a laydee ericsbrother lol

Edited by honeybee13
Paras.

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No, you write to the college principal with a formal complaint, naming names as far as whio hasnt been obliging regarding the paperwork and let them know that you will be taking the matter furhter unless the complain is answered in a timely manner. Make it clear that you expect to see copy of the forms, indentures assessments etc (basically anything you would seek under a SAR) and copy of the college equalities statements, your daughter's disability needs assessment copy of college grievance procedure so you dont have to start again if they say you havent followed it.

 

You need to be sending letters as they are harder to ignore, I sid this in my previous post but you seem to sticking with methods that are denaible. Who do you think is going to admit they took your call for example?

You must use their own procedures against them and exaust them completely beofre paying for a solicitor to do what you should be doing yourself. Have you sent the letter to the salon demanding the correct pay yet? have you even worked out what your daughters hourly rate is so you can demand that payment with the promise of court action if they dont cough up? If you cant work it out post up her start and finish dates, hours worked per day and her hourly rate and we will do the sums for you. We will even compose the letter before action you will need to send if they dont cough up but we cannot write it and send it for you

 

Is being a laydee an excuse for not pulling your finger out and geting pen to paper?

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No it's not an excuse, and i have written a letter of formal complaint today which says exactly what you said. It needs some amendments in there to add things, but it is written and ready to go. She started on 5th September and was finished on 18th November. She worked 5 days a week (one was a saturday) from 9am-5pm and she came out with £115pw.

 

I AM listening to your advice and taking it all on board and i AM following what you have said, i just want to ensure I have all the information i need to have to make the complaint, and i do, very sincerely, appreciate all of your help. Thank you

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Goff, its just ericsbrothers very dry sense of humour. ;)

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Goff, its just ericsbrothers very dry sense of humour. ;)

 

lol, i guessed, and it's absolutely OK, i haven't taken any offence or anything and am really grateful for his help :-)

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the real point I am trying to get across is that telephone calls do not leave a paper trail so get ignored, meanings twisted etc and you end up getting frustrated by people who are more interested in covering their own backsides than helping the students.

 

Some years back I didnt get a response to a formal request to a council so I started sending a biro to them every day recorded delivery so they had no excuse not to put pen to paper. Another complaint I made I wrote out on a paving slab and posted it, obviously everyone in RM who handled it, along with half of the staff at the recipient's company has sight of it before it arrived with the target person so they could hardly ignore things after that. Those who live by delay and obfuscation hate being exposed to ridicule, it shines a light on their activities and shows them up for what they are.

 

So your letter to the employer should essentially be a demand for unpaid wages claculated as 1 weeks notice pay as her termination of employment wasnt in writing ( the reasoning here being that even summary dismissal requires a reason in writing within the statutory period and that didnt happen so you ask for the extra week's money to cover the time she wasnt at work but hadnt been formally notified that she was no no longer employed) holiday pay accrued being £115 x5.6 (annual entitlement in weeks) /52(weeks in year)x10 (weeks actually worked+ notice period). This makes £123.84 plus the weeks notice pay so £238.84 total.

 

You may need to look at a calendar to work this out exactly, I have done a rough weeks worked figure, you can tune this to hours per year if you wish. Make sure that you tell them that you expect this to be paid within 7 days or formal steps will be taken to recover the money.

 

Send a copy to the college so they know that you arent messing about and they will be more likely to address the other problems which you are raising with them. Then get cracking on your compaint to the college principal about the shortcomings of the way the course tutor has handled this, esp regarding the lack of response to your representations to the tutor and ask for copy of college grievance procedures, copy of their equalities/disabilities policy, their assessment of your daughter in this regard, copy of apprenticeship forms etc and let them know you expect to receive the documents in a week or less and an initial response to the complaint about the tutors lack of performance within 14 days or you will be taking the next step as per the procedure.

Edited by honeybee13
Paras.

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Thank you ericsbrother. I have already written the letter to the college and that was posted yesterday. I am now in the process of writing to the salon. Ill keep you informed of what happens.

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