Lärarförbundet
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​The Almega Employers’ Organisation Free School Agreement – a collective agreement for Almega employees

The agreement between the teachers’ unions and Almega lasts for three years and is known as the Free School Agreement. The agreement applies from 1 September 2017 to 31 August 2020.

The Free School agreement applies to employees of companies including all companies within Academedia (e.g. Pysslingen, Vittra, IT-gymnasiet, NTI schools), Lärande, Kunskapsskolan and Internationella Engelska skolan.

Please note that employers affiliated with IDEA are no longer part of the Free School agreement, such as Kulturama, Tillskärarakademin, Påhlmans, Medborgarskolan, Fryshuset, Järvaskolan, etc. (a total of 17 employers affiliated with IDEA). These are now covered by the IDEA School Agreement.

Here is the agreement in brief:

Salary agreement

The Free School Agreement was signed on 20 November 2017 between Almega and Lärarnas Samverkansråd (Teachers’ Cooperation Council) covering the period from 01/09/2017 to 31/08/2020. Outside of the changes made, the agreement is otherwise unchanged. A PDF of the agreement (in Swedish) is available on Lärarförbundet web site. Please note that the salary agreement is part of the PDF.

The agreement is a decentralised wage and salary agreement. Salary reviews take place on 1 September 2017, 2018 and 2019, unless otherwise agreed locally. Please note that no salary review date has been set for 2020; the 2019 salary review is thus the final regular salary review covered by the agreement.

Our interpretation of the agreement is that employers are obliged to invite both Lärarförbundet and Lärarnas Riksförbund to an opening meeting on the subject of the importance of discussing the basic conditions for the salary review and to, among other things, the ability to conduct a dialogue about entering into a locally-adapted negotiation agreement. In particular, we would like to emphasise the importance of discussing the requirements surrounding this year's salary review, the salary criteria, the objectives of the salary review, the content and quality of the salary discussions (in Swedish “lönesamtal”), and to jointly analyse the salary structure and the desired structure. This is particularly important since the teachers’ pay rise (“lärarlönelyftet” in Swedish), is generally not part of the salary review.

Local parties monitor the salary review, both in terms of processes and outcomes, in order to develop the salary process over time. This should advantageously take place as soon as possible after the salary review is complete.

Order of negotiations:

  • Information on the content of the agreement is given to members of Lärarförbundet and LR. (The salary agreement applies to members of these unions)
  • Local parties shall review paragraph 2 of the agreement – items such as basic conditions, etc.
  • During the salary discussion, employers notify employees of the new salary and give reasons for it. (The aim of the parties is that the salary conversation should be clearly linked to targets and results, and that these conversations can provide further information for the employer to determine the new salary. The salary discussion does not have the status of a negotiation.)
  • The employer submits his/her proposal to Lärarförbundet and LR to reconcile the new salaries.
  • Local negotiations must be called within 14 days of the employer submitting the supporting documentation for reconciliation.
  • If agreement is not reached, either party may request central negotiations within 14 days of the conclusion of the local negotiation (but please refer to the central consultation section above)

General summary of the current agreement:

  • In order for the agreement to apply, one party must have requested intervention (1:1).
  • Lärarförbundet’s and Lärarnas Riksförbund’s Samverkansråd (Teachers’ Cooperation Council) is the negotiating party.
  • Clarification of 3:3 (early termination of temporary employment): If an employee is employed by a series of rolling fixed-term contracts, termination may take place during the first six months of employment, provided that this has been agreed with the employer. This does not apply if the employee is hired in another department or in another position. The employment contract must include that termination may be affected by means of notification in line with the intention of the agreement.
  • Remuneration in kronor in the agreement increased by 4.4%, 2%, and 2.3% on 1st September each year respectively (2017-2019). Note that this is not connected to the salary agreement, but to compensation for offset working hours, out-of-hours overtime and any emergency compensation.
  • Remuneration for regular working hours classed as out-of-hours can be found in 4:6 of the agreement. Note that out-of-hours compensation does not apply to non-regulated working time.

Working hours (4)

  • The standard working time model is semesteranställning” (fully-regulated working hours), but the most common type is “ferieanställning”, with time off during the summer and Christmas (an increasing trend)
  • The calculation period for average working hours is 6 months (or according to local agreement)
  • In the case of “ferieanställning”, Christmas is also holiday (ferie). Regulated working time is 1,360 hours for 194 days. Total annual working time 1,807 hours.
  • Normally, you will be entitled to overtime pay (4:7). This is provided that overtime work has been requested by the employer in advance or approved afterwards. Your employment contract should indicate that you are entitled to overtime pay. In particular, it must indicate if you are not entitled to special compensation for overtime work (4:7:1). This usually applies to managers or workers with flexibility in terms of working hours, who generally then are compensated through higher salary and/or more vacation days. Such agreements must be in writing.
  • Note that out-of-hours and overtime compensation cannot be paid for the same time. Each half-hour period started is taken into account and must be aggregated if overtime work has been carried out both before and after regular working hours.
  • This can be compensated in terms of money or time in lieu, providing that the employer, after consultation, finds that this fits in with the needs of the company’s activities.
  • Compensation levels can be found in 4:7:3.

Paid leave

  • You are entitled to a minimum of 25 days of leave, or more if in accordance with the agreement
  • The calendar year is the holiday year and the qualification year, unless otherwise agreed locally, or if the business has complied with the rules of the Annual Leave Act. For teachers with “ferieanställning”, the period from the middle of August to the corresponding time the next year constitutes the holiday year and qualification year, unless otherwise agreed.
  • Please note that teachers with “ferieanställning” do not have the right to save holidays
  • During paid leave, regular salary and holiday allowance is paid (5:3)
  • It is important to check if you have received too much paid leave, as the employer can deduct this from both holiday pay and salary (5:4)

Holiday pay (ferielön)

  • The rules on holiday pay can be found in paragraph 6 of the collective agreement.
  • Please note that if you are in receipt of sickness benefit, parental allowance or rehabilitation allowance during the holiday period, you will retain your holiday pay.
  • In accordance with the law on sickness benefit, if the sickness benefit period occurs during the first 35 calendar days of the summer holiday period, sickness benefit is also paid, based on holiday pay
  • Holiday pay is identical to your monthly salary if you have not been absent for any reason other than those under 17, 17 a and 17 b of the Annual Leave Act.
  • If employment ceases in connection with the summer holiday, holiday pay will be paid during the holiday as if you were still employed.
  • If you are on parental leave or study leave, you must return to work at least 7 calendar days before the half-term, Easter and autumn holidays to be entitled to holiday pay and when you intend to continue the leave after the holidays, unless you have actually been working.

Sickness

  • New rules have been introduced from 1 January 2019, with the first sick day deduction being replaced by a qualifying deduction
  • The purpose is to make deductibles related to sickness absence more fair
  • From 1 January, it does not matter if you go home for part of a day. A full qualifying deduction will then be made if the sickness continues. The qualifying deduction corresponds to 20% of a normal working week.
  • Otherwise, by law the employer will pay sick pay for the first 14 days of a period of illness.
  • In order to receive sick pay in addition to sickness benefit from day 15 to day 90 (calendar days), you must have been employed for at least one consecutive year (or have held a position with a previous employer where you were entitled to it). Otherwise, you are entitled to sick pay in addition to sickness benefit until the 45th calendar day of the period of illness (7:1)
  • As of day 15, different deductions will be made to your salary depending on whether salary is under 8 times the basic amount (prisbasbeloppet) or over. For elements of pay under the threshold, 0.9 times the daily pay is deducted per calendar day. For elements of pay over the threshold, 0.1 times the daily pay is deducted per calendar day.
  • For definitions of monthly pay, daily pay, weekly working hours, hourly pay, etc., and weekly working hours for teachers with “ferieanställning”, see 2:1

Paid parental leave

Parental leave allowances are paid in connection with the birth or adoption of a child, if:

  • you have been employed by the employer for at least one consecutive year and
  • you continue to be employed for at least 3 months after the leave period (8:1:1)

The size of the supplement will vary depending on whether your monthly pay exceeds or falls below a pay limit calculated as (10 x current basic amount)/12. For aspects of pay below the limit, the supplement corresponds to 10% of daily pay per calendar day, while aspects of pay above the limit correspond to 90% of daily pay per calendar day.

The supplement is paid for different periods of time depending your period of continuous employment:

  • 120 days if you have been employed for at least 1 year
  • 150 days if it is at least 2 consecutive years
  • 180 days if you have been employed for at least 3 consecutive years
  • The supplement is only paid for a consecutive period of leave and for no longer than the period itself, and is paid in proportion to the extent of the leave.

Payment of half of the supplement is made at the beginning of the leave period and the remaining amount is paid when the leave has ended, and employment has continued for 3 months.

Termination

  • Your notice period will start on the first day of notice of termination. For example, if you announce your termination on 20 January, your last working day will be on 20 February, if you have one month’s notice.
  • The notice periods in the event of resignation are stated in 11:1 of the agreement.
  • The notice periods in the event of termination by the employer are stated in 11:2 of the agreement.
  • It is entirely permissible to agree on longer notice periods when commencing employment, or at a later date. A common variant is a 3-month mutual notice period or the longer notice period applicable under the collective agreement. Contact Lärarförbundet if you are unsure of what applies, preferably before signing your employment contract.
  • In order for the employer to terminate a permanent employee, valid justification is required. Valid justification may be lack of work or personal reasons. Lack of work is a legal-technical concept. The employer must negotiate a reorganisation and the order in which employees are terminated. Deviations from this order may be made in the form of collective agreements in accordance with appendix 1 of the agreement. The parties have developed a guide on how to manage a situation where there is a lack of work.
  • If you have reached 55 years of age and been employed continuously by the same employer for at least 10 years, the period of notice in the event of lack of work is 1 year.
  • The employer must refer terminated employees dismissed to Trygghetsrådet (TRR) for support. Please note that the employee also must contact TRR.
  • Please also note that you must observe the notice period. If you leave your position before the end of the employment, compensation must be paid for the financial damage and inconvenience caused, of an amount at least equal to the salary for the part of the notice period not observed. (11:6)

Recent news:

  • Exemptions from the agreement: employees in a managerial or comparable position (which are exempt from the Employment Protection Act – these are not "regular" head teachers/preschool heads)
  • Probationary period – In the event of an absence of longer than 6 days, workers and employers may agree to a corresponding prolongation of the probationary period. This means that absence will also reset the holiday period and leave allowance, unless the employee has been present for at least 5 months.
  • Extension for shorter absences for holiday pay from 30 to 60 days and that annual salary may never exceed twelve months' salary plus holiday allowance (note that this is only linked to the chapter on holiday pay (ferielön) on page 23 of the agreement under item 6:3, shorter absence).
  • 11:9 – Right of priority does not apply to new employment relating to substitute employees that is deemed to be of a duration not exceeding one month (previously 14 days).
  • Approved permanent sickness benefit
  • The way forward – guidance on lack of work, support material for local parties – appendix without collective agreement status.
  • Editorial changes to a number of points (with the emphasis on editorial), where some examples are revised headings to sections on temporary employment, rules regarding Swedish National Day moved to rules on absence, 4:5 - change from "nightly rest" to "daily rest", "IDEA" removed throughout, change from "National Insurance Act" to "Social Insurance Code", etc.

There are already good opportunities for local work on working hours issues. The more employees who read through the agreement and know what they are entitled to, the better the conditions for all our members. If the agreement is followed, the working situation for you and your colleagues will greatly improve. Read more about our working time and salary tools. (in Swedish). Work to ensure that representatives and safety representatives are appointed if they are not already in place (talk to the Membership Services-Kontakten) and use the collective knowledge available from Lärarförbundet. It is very important that cooperation under the Employment (Co-Determination in the Workplace) Act or partnership agreement occurs in connection with budget setting and the allocation of posts, etc.

Together we are strong!

Questions?

Do not hesitate to contact Lärarförbundets Membership Services - Kontakten if you have any questions about the agreement.

From Sweden: 0770 33 03 03
From abroad: +46 770 33 03 03

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