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Reducing Teacher Workload

Scrolling through Twitter and reading the TES, it’s clear to see that there’s a whole new wave of attention on the increasing rates of teachers leaving their profession. Perhaps the summer holidays being on the horizon has spurred on daydreams of life without the classroom. Perhaps there’s a new drop in hope with never ending announcements about limited resources, capped pay rises, and increasing pressure for success (with A level and GCSE results less than a month away!) Either way, one of our country’s most important workforces is facing a struggle with their workload and people know it.

Without teachers, there’s not really a future – not a bright one at least. The problem with knowing this is that we place such a pressure on their shoulders. It’s easy to forget that teachers are not a unified, faceless entity. Instead, teachers are individuals. Individuals who of whom, 47% have had to seek medical help because of work related health issues. The modern lifestyle of the teacher is unsustainable!

What can we be doing to recover the career that is meant to be a calling and not a struggle?

The government are working to reduce the workload on teachers, by tackling the pressures on:

  • Marking
  • Planning
  • Data management

This attempt to reduce teacher workloads started in 2014, and in 2017 the first large scale survey that was carried out to track the success was released. The results, however, showed that between 2013 and 2016, the average working hours of the secondary classroom teacher increased from 45.9 to 53.5 per week. That means that secondary teachers are spending at least 10 hours a day working when the school day is only 6 hours long.

Reducing Teacher Workload Government Poster
The Government have released guides and pamphlets since the 2014 program but, so far, they don’t seem to have had that much effect…

Attempts at reducing workload are currently just not working, and it’s making careers in education so draining that almost a third of teachers quit mainstream teaching within five years.

With the summer holidays here, it’s a time to reflect on the academic year just past.

Teachers, you deserve to take a break and remember all the good that you have done this year. We know you’ve worked hard, and we know it’s not easy, but we also know that everything you do is amazing. Read amusing stories about the oddest gifts that students have given, and relive some of the best moments that you’ll experience in teaching. Senior members of staff, headteachers: take a moment to consider your teacher workload in your school. Simplify your processes, ask your teachers for some feedback. There’s no overnight solution to this crisis, but there are constant ways to be trying.

Why is this important to us?

At Eastpoint, we aim to be helping as much as we can – to ensure that you, as teachers, can be you at your best. If we can ensure that a teacher is not worrying about their supplies when they should be focusing on their students, then we’re proud to be helping that way. To learn more about us and our brands, click here.

“There is no failure. Only feedback.” – Robert Allen