What adjustments might be considered unreasonable?

The reasonableness of an employer making adjustment(s) is a question that must be considered objectively and must take into account a number of factors as follows:

  • whether or not making the adjustment(s) would be effective in preventing the disadvantage;
  • the practicability of the adjustment(s);
  • the financial and other costs of making the adjustment(s) and the extent of any disruption caused;
  • the extent of the employer’s financial and other resources;
  • the availability to the employer of financial or other assistance to help them make an adjustment(s);
  • the type and size of the employer.

The above implies that if you are a small organisation you do not have the same expectations placed upon you in terms of reasonable adjustment(s) as a larger organisation.  You do need to consider adjustment(s) carefully and consider whether they are possible, but where finances or other resources, opportunities for redeployment or for moving duties to other staff are very limited, the test for reasonableness will be higher.

From this we might deduce that not all adjustments requested are likely to be deemed reasonable.   In particular, practicability and extent of disruption are likely to be key determinants in the reasonability of any adjustment(s) in a school setting.