Workload pressures have reached a critical point in teaching.
The results of the workload survey conducted by DfE have been published and the headlines show that since 2010, average working hours for teachers have increased by as much as 9 hours per week. With Primary colleagues working averagely 60 hours per week and secondary colleagues working 56 hours per week. Figures for senior leaders are much greater. Even accounting for the holidays and assuming you do no holiday work ( which of course most do!), compared to other public sector workers on weekday working contracts teachers probably average 500 hours a year more. However it’s not simply the working hours, its the expectations and the duress that goes with it.
Nicky Morgan has promised reform. But this is going to take time, if indeed it happens.
I’ve been researching this issue as some of you know, now for some years. The new edition of my award-winning Managing Workload Pocketbook is due out very soon. In the revised edition’ I’ve beefed up the approaches to workload management, but I’ve also done something else.
I’ve looked more closely at resilience. Resilience can be defined as:
The power or ability to return to the original form or position, after being bent, compressed or stretched…Oxford English Dictionary It’s this ability to return to original form on a moment by moment and day by day basis that I’ve been researching and trialling. And I’ve collected some fabulous approaches to building mental and emotional resilience.
I’m constantly shocked by the number of colleagues I meet and talk to who are in stress-related crisis. So I’ve been running for a while now, a number of support offers.
So forgive me being direct with you here. If you or someone you know, or indeed your school as a whole, needs some support here is what is on offer:
1. One to one coaching to support change towards even greater resilience
2. An 8 week Learn Mindfulness Course for up to 20 people at your school
3. A one day INSET or half day workshop on Developing Resilience for School Workers
Radio Four’s File on Four broadcast this heart-rending podcast recently.
If you or someone you know might benefit from some assistance, please get in touch by e mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
We can’t have happy, balanced and high performing children without the same being true of your teachers and TA’s.
It’s time to take action