Unpromoted Posts

Created on: 23 Jan 2018 | Last modified: 31 Jul 2023


1.1 The following motion was approved by the 2013 Annual General Meeting: 

"This AGM instructs Council to investigate and report on the extent to which Local Authorities restrict applications for unpromoted posts to their previous probationers."

1.2 The Employment Relations Department wrote to all Scottish Councils. Information was sought on whether Council adopted ring fencing of posts for probationers and whether probationers were graded at the end of the probationary period for allocation to permanent posts. 21 responses were received.


2.1 A summary of responses is appended (Appendix A).

2.2 The majority of responses indicated that posts are not ring fenced for probationers to be placed in that Council area if they meet the Standard for Registration.

2.3 There has been criticism that while the Induction Scheme is a national scheme any restricted appointment process interferes with that concept. The EIS has previously raised this with COSLA and Scottish Government. 

While it can be argued that ring fencing cuts across open appointment procedures such practice is not in breach of employment law.

2.4 The evidence from the limited responses on the survey indicates that restricted applications for posts operates in few Council areas. While that is a matter of concern for the EIS there is no current policy on whether we advocate open national advertising of vacancies.

Further, open advertising  should be set against certain workforce planning demands. It is also clear that we seek to secure restricted appointment procedures to secure permanence for those who meet the qualifying service that applies in local agreements on the transfer to permanence.


3.1 This report should be referred to LA Secretaries to be raised in local negotiation.

Appendix A



Aberdeen City



No policy of ring fencing specifically for probationers. No grading of probationers into vacancies, either permanent or fixed term.


Primary - Internal advert in first instance for teachers on the induction scheme and those on temporary/supply contracts.

Secondary – All unpromoted posts are openly advertised.

Argyll and Bute



Primary – Previous ring fencing and grading. Now open national adverts.

Secondary – All posts, permanent and temporary, are advertised nationally.

Dumfries and Galloway

No ring fencing or grading

East Dunbartonshire

No ring fencing or grading

East Lothian

No ring fencing or grading

East Renfrewshire

No ring fencing or grading

City of Edinburgh

Currently no ring fencing or grading. A limited ring fenced exercise for secondary subject shortage is being considered.




No ring fencing or grading




Longer term vacancies ring fenced to probationers, supply and permanent teachers. No grading of probationers.


No ring fencing or grading


Does not ring fence vacancies to probationers in the first instance, nor does it grade probationers for placement in permanent posts or long term fixed term vacancies.


No ring fencing or grading

North Ayrshire

Posts advertised internally then nationally. Probationers ring fenced and allocated to permanent or temporary following competency framework.

North Lanarkshire



No ring fencing or grading

Perth and Kinross

Ring fenced discontinued in 2013. No grading.


Does not ring fence unpromoted teaching vacancies to former probationers.

Scottish Borders

No ring fencing or grading


No ring fencing or grading

South Ayrshire

Previously operated ring fencing. Now replaced by open advertisements. No grading.

South Lanarkshire

Ring fencing internally to existing teachers including probationers. Appointments are based on recruitment assessment criteria, references and Headteacher’s choice.



West Dunbartonshire


West Lothian

Ring fencing for temporary staff, probationers and staff seeking voluntary transfer. Probationers graded following interview and school report.

Western Isles

Council does not ring-fence vacancies to probationers or grade probationers for types of vacancies.

Unpromoted posts policy PDF