As a result of our campaign, the government and Ofsted have produced a video about some of the activity around marking, data collection and lesson planning that Ofsted don’t want to see, and that your head should not ask you for.
Watch the video, and then share it with your colleagues.
Make sure it’s acted upon in your school.
Teacher workload is at unprecedented levels. The most recent DfE teacher workload survey showed teachers working on average 54.4 hours a week. We are losing far too many good teachers. An exhausted, dispirited teacher is not what children or parents want or deserve.
The NUT’s campaign to make the Government lift the pressures on teachers and schools is beginning to secure some outcomes. Far too little is still being done, however, to reform the high stakes accountability system that is the root cause of excessive workload.
While the NEU continues to press for decisive Government action to reduce the demands on teachers, it’s important that teachers themselves also take the steps available to them to bring about improvements at school level, particularly by acting collectively.
Take action on workload with our step to step guide.
NEU survey on teachers workload
A staggering 81% of teachers said they have considered leaving teaching in the last year because of the pressures of workload, according to a survey of over 8,000 teachers launched at the NEU annual conferences this year.
Read the report here.
Workload will continue to be a priority campaign for the NEU in 2018.
Please make sure you have completed our workload survey and ask all your members to do the same.
And check out these documents to help you challenge workload in your school
The government is about to announce its findings on teacher workload and we expect there to be very little change from last year. It is clear their policies have failed to address the concerns of teachers and implement any serious change. So a continuing priority for us this term is working with members in schools to win improvements in wokload.
OFSTED have issued guidance to on such things as Mocksteds, photographic evidence and British values. If your school is persisting with the imposition of such practices despite the advice from OFSTED, please contact email@example.com
You can download advice from the DFE commissioned Independent Teacher Workload Review group on marking, data management and planning from the NUT website. Please use these documents in discussions with members and Senior Leadership to address excessive workload.
You will also want to share the guidance of National Director of
OFSTED, Sean Harford, who has written on workload for the Teacher Magazine. In the article he encourages school to use Ofsted mythbusters and other materials to change culture and practice around issues such as planning, marking and use of data. Do call a meeting to discuss this and see if you can identify some areas for change in your school.
You can read the article here: ofsted_workload
Please let us know how you get on. If schools refuse to tackle excessive workload, the NEU has policy of authorising industrial action in support of that aim.
In our survey of ELTA reps, 82% said that workload was too high. This is in line with teachers all over the UK who say that workload is making the job untenable.
Even the Government’s own workload survey showed that teachers are working unsustainable hours with primary teachers working, on average, 60 hours a week and secondary teachers, 55 hours. The findings of this survey were only made public after strike action and sustained lobbying of the government by the national union, local divisions and individual members.
Please share this information and these reports with members and ensure your Senior Leadership is complying with DfE guidance.
Should you feel that further action is required, please contact us. The NEU will support members in taking action in schools to challenge excessive workload.
These alone will not be enough. The government has still failed to implement any meaningful steps to reduce workload and ignores the high numbers of teachers leaving, and the falling numbers of trained teachers entering, the profession. The government’s statements about workload ignore the central point about reforming the high stakes system of accountability which is driving unnecessary workload for teachers and school leaders.
The NUT has called for the following action:
The NUT has also published an Eight Steps programme showing the Government how to reduce excessive teacher workload quickly, at little or no cost, in England and Wales.
Teachers should not be covering lessons unless it is an emergency or if covering lessons has been negotiated as part of their contract.
For more details see this document Tower Hamlets model cover policy May 2009
As a result of pressure from the NUT here have been a number of significant developments regarding teacher workload and working-time.
These developments represent a significant shift in the attitude of the government to teacher workload and give NUT members a great opportunity to bring about some positive changes in their school. Becoming the agency of change can be very empowering for NUT members.
A strategy for school groups
The NUT wants to encourage school groups to meet and discuss these developments and to decide collectively if there are any issues that they would like to be addressed in their school.
You can find more details and statements from Ofsted and the Department for Education (DfE) which cover key areas at http://www.teachers.org.uk/campaigns/protect-teachers/workload and these can be used as a framework you’re your discussion.
All of these issues are covered by the NUT campaign to reduce workload and our Action Short of Strike Action – therefore the NUT will support members up to and including paid strike action in seeking to win changes in their school. Union members have done this successfully in many schools already.
How to do this
The NUT uses the following rubric when developing a campaign, which can be used at school level:
Step by step
Download a copy of this guidance here Step_by_Step
You can rely both on our ASOS instructions and on firm support from your Union.
If marking policy is a problem in your workplace, ask your NUT rep to call a meeting to discuss it. Have a look at the NUT guidance on reasonable marking arrangements. Take your proposed changes to the head teacher/principal. If the issue remains unresolved, NUT school and college groups can refuse to comply with marking policies which generate excessive and unnecessary workload.
Many teachers are working way beyond their their directed time obligations. Teachers can only be directed to work for 1265 hours and yet we know that many of our members are working up to 2000 hours or more, often on unnecessary tasks.
Your school should publish an annual calendar which outlines the allocation of directed time hours. No teacher should undertake directed tasks outside of this. Ask to see a directed time calendar and check you are not being directed to work outside of this.
ELTA members have won real improvements in recent years by challenging unfair working practices such as a reduction of meetings, changes to marking policies and the use of excessive monitoring practices.
This guide summarises the entitlements of teachers under the STPCD, their rights under regulation and legislation and the NUT’s policies and advice on workload and working hours. Teachers who are employed by a local authority or by the governing body of a foundation, or voluntary aided school are covered by STPCD conditions. Many teachers working in Academies will be too, though this is not automatic in all cases
Click here to download summary guidance on teachers working time and duties
Click here to download detailed guidance on Teachers Working Time and Duties
Click here to download the Sixth Form Colleges Teachers’ workload and working time guidance.
Read more about the NUT’s campaign on workload
Check out the NUT Edufacts