Hertford College underpays summer school helpers three years in a row

Hertford College has recently found itself in potential trouble with HMRC over the underpayment of its summer staff by the International Programmes Department.

A mistake happened whereby some students working for the summer school programmes at Hertford paid for accommodation separately, but at the same time had accommodation deducted from their pay.

The College recently sent out an email to let Residential Advisors (RAs) for the summer pro-grams from this year know that they will be refunded the amount that was incorrectly deducted.The email read: “If you have been employed by the Hertford College International Programme in 2017, 2018, 2019 and have paid for your accommodation at Hertford College whilst working for the programme you will be entitled to a full refund of the accommodation fees. This is only applicable to Residential Advisors and Office Helpers.

“All accommodation fees have originally been deducted on a month by month basis, therefore the deduction calculations will be refunded to you at this original amount. Adjustments will be made for tax purposes where applicable. “

The College is committed to providing a fair and comparative remuneration package for those who work for the success of the International Programme. We will be reviewing the overall package offered to future employees of the International Programme. We thank you for your commitment and hope that you will be pleased with this news.”

However, concerns have been raised that the college has left people in confusion over whether or not they will receive the refund, with only people employed at the college for this year receiving the email with relevant information. Other students have instead been left to find out through student helpers who worked for the college this year.

Students who have emailed asking about the refund have allegedly struggled to get in contact with the relevant people, with one anonymous former employee saying: “I’ve emailed the email we’ve been told several times and yet no one has replied to me.

“I have no idea how I can find out whether I need to do anything to be refunded, and so many people weren’t even sent the email explaining that they may be re-funded in the first place.

“I brought up the issue of having effectively paid for accommodation twice whilst working for IP but they were just a bit dismissive of me. The whole situation is a bit of a mess.”

It is expected that students will be refunded in October or later.

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