Maternity leave while on a learnership

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Zebilon Mmekwa 1 week, 5 days ago.

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  • #69862

    Jenny Mamdoo

    Hello everyone,

    Can anyone advise us on the following:

    What is the training provider’s responsibility once a learner returns from maternity leave? Note that the learner would have missed out on training days.

    What happens if a learner goes on maternity leave and the period of duration specified in the learnership agreement has expired? i.e there are no further opportunities for this qualification/

    Thanks so much.

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  • #69863

    sylvia hammond

    Hi Jenny,
    Thanks for posting a question, which has very real implications not only for training providers, but also employers and especially for the individual women.
    I have also tweeted and posted to LinkedIn with the comment that we need some policy clarity on this issue. Otherwise we have employers all responding differently.
    So let’s see what response we receive.

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  • #69867

    Zebilon Mmekwa

    Hi Jenny,
    This is going to be my understanding of how things work in your case. Training Provider may not necessarily be the employer of a learner and therefore, 3 parties are involved in drawing up a contract and they are the learner, employer, and training provider. Therefore, the timing on the side of the learner is of the essence before she can be included in the learnership program. There is also a Pre-Assessment meeting that the service provider arranges with the employer on behalf of the prospective learners. It is an orientation that must take place before learnership program can start whereby the service provider, in his/her agenda, the question that is noted is whether there are “Special needs or Barriers on the applicant for assessment. Anything anomaly should be picked up from there and the decision be made about the learner. I am quite certain that all the parties will be aware of the so-called problem at hand.
    Pregnancy is a planned affair, or maybe, for argument sake, pregnancy takes 9 months and learnership program takes 12 months, including the two chances they give you, within the period, to be declared competent. Normally, the program takes 6 to 7 months, depending on the qualification. Hence, I said it depends on the timing. We must remember that pregnancy is not an impairment of normal physiological function and therefore, you’ll still be required to complete assignments during maternity leave and where necessary, to seek clarity on sections in the modules that one is not familiar with thereby contacting colleagues in the program or the facilitator. You do not have a second chance to repeat the program otherwise, the system will kick you out. As facilitators or training provider, we do encounter such challenges, which I regard that as minor because they are not problems. Coming to think of it, one can plan a pregnancy when learnership starts and you’ll be able to finish the program before going on maternity.
    That’s my take as far as this topic is concerned. Once we suggest policy in such matters, we are inviting problems for our learners because they will come up with a policy of pregnancy test before being admitted into the program.
    I hope this will help you view this differently and not as a problem.

    Zebilon Mmekwa

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