Workload advice

Workload has reached unprecedented levels. Take action today.

Teachers in England work an average of 54 hours a week, while school leaders work in excess of 60, according to the DfE’s own workload survey. Support staff regularly work beyond their contracted hours. Excessive hours spent on unnecessary tasks driven by the accountability regime does not help pupils learn and is contributing to the recruitment and retention crisis. 

Download our workload guidance to help you tackle excessive workload in your workplace.

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First steps to tackling workload

Our workload guidance will help you identify tasks or activities which are unnecessary, have no education benefit and cause the most stress. You can use this document as a basis for discussion in your school about how you and your colleagues can begin to tackle workload. It also provides a useful starting point for dialogue with your senior leadership team.

First steps to tackling workload

Our workload guidance will help you identify tasks or activities which are unnecessary, have no education benefit and cause the most stress. You can use this document as a basis for discussion in your school about how you and your colleagues can begin to tackle workload. It also provides a useful starting point for dialogue with your senior leadership team.

Run a workload campaign in your school

Any actions to tackle excessive workload and working hours will be more effective if taken together, with staff and leaders working collaboratively to make a positive change across the whole workplace. The more members who participate, the greater the impact will be. Remember that you can use this approach to tackle just one workload concern or more than one - it is up to you and your colleagues to identify and take forward the issues of main concern.

Run a workload campaign in your school

Any actions to tackle excessive workload and working hours will be more effective if taken together, with staff and leaders working collaboratively to make a positive change across the whole workplace. The more members who participate, the greater the impact will be. Remember that you can use this approach to tackle just one workload concern or more than one - it is up to you and your colleagues to identify and take forward the issues of main concern.

DfE workload group reports

Last year, the DfE set up three groups to address the key issues of lesson planning, marking and data management. These groups were made up of teachers and school leaders, union representatives, the DfE and Ofsted. Below you can find a summary of the recommendations from the these three working groups.

Marking

The DfE report on marking encourages schools to review their practice with the aim of shrinking the importance marking has gained and stopping unnecessary and burdensome practice. Find out how you can make changes in your workplace.

Planning

The DfE report on planning highlights that good planning is the key to effective teaching but seeks to address the unnecessary nature of the work and lesson plans. Find out how you can use this advice in your workplace.

Data

The DfE report on data acknowledges that when used well, data can have a positive impact, helping teachers to teach and school leaders to focus on the right issues. But it has become a burden rather than a benefit and needs to change.