Best Practice

Workload audit: Thirty questions for your school

We all know that teachers work well beyond their designated hours, but just how can heads help to adjust the work/life balance for their staff? Drawing on the government’s Workload Survey and expert working groups, Suzanne O’Connell poses 30 self-evaluation questions for schools

In February 2017, the Teacher Workload Survey 2016 was published. This was the first in the promised series of research into teacher workload to be published by the Department for Education (DfE) every two years.

This online survey provided detailed evidence of the long hours teachers are working and their views about it. It showed that more than a third of all primary teachers worked more than 60 hours in the reference week compared to a quarter of those in secondary schools. Other main findings included:

As important as any of the statistics relating to the work actually done, was teachers’ attitudes to it. Ninety three per cent reported in the survey that workload was at least a fairly serious problem in their school and 52 per cent that it was a very serious problem.

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