Glenalmond appeal Employment Tribunal’s decision on disability discrimination claim

MoJA Scottish school has indicated that it will be appealing after one of its former employees succeeded in suing it in the Employment Tribunal.

Glenalmond College has confirmed that it will be appealing the decision of the Employment Tribunal in Haylock v Glenalmond College after the Tribunal found that Mrs Alison Haylock had been constructively dismissed and discriminated against on the basis of her disability.

Mrs Alison Haylock, a former teacher at the elite Glenalmond College, made the claim in the Employment Tribunal after she complained that the College had failed to put in place measures (such as access to reliable handwashing and toilet facilities) which would have allowed her to manage a sensitive digestive condition that constituted a disability. Mrs Haylock gave evidence at the original Tribunal that water would often be cut off to her residence for three days at a time and that the College had therefore failed to make reasonable adjustments to the workplace to accommodate her disability. She therefore resigned from her post as a result of this issue (among others) and submitted claims for constructive dismissal and disability discrimination.

The original Employment Tribunal found that the College had not made the adjustments that would have been reasonable in all the circumstances to alter the workplace to accommodate Mrs Haylock’s disability and that she had resigned partially or wholly as a result of this failure. Compensation in the matter has not yet been finalized but it is understood that Mrs Haylock is seeking £365,000 in damages from the College. It was reported this week, however, that the College is seeking to appeal the decision of the Employment Tribunal, although it is not currently clear on what grounds it is looking to do so.

Mrs Haylock commented on this news: “It seems that a school that charges fees in excess of £30,000 a year will not put in the infrastructure to provide a wholesome water supply. That decision leaves current and future pupils, all full-time staff who are contractually obliged to live on site, their families and several outlying houses, under constant threat of having their water supply either cut off, without warning, for extended periods of time, or of having water which is not fit to drink.”