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.

  • Group of students study diligently in university library while a professor helps them understand the difficult concepts Advice
    Tackling workload together

    Our workload guidance will help you identify tasks or activities which are unnecessary, have no education benefit and cause the most stress.

DfE letter on reducing workload

The Secretary of State (SoS) for Education has written a letter on reducing workload to all leaders across the country supporting reducing teacher and support staff workload and making clear recommendations on data management gathering.

  • We encourage all reps to bring the report and letter to the attention of their school leaders. 
  • If you feel that you need support and resources in your workplace to tackle workload, contact us

Making data work - report of the teacher workload advisory group

A new report from the Workload Advisory Group recommends that objectives and performance management discussions should not be based on teacher generated data and predictions or solely on the assessment data for a single group of pupils. Ofsted should continue to ensure that inspectors do not ask to see performance management targets based on assessment data during inspections. The DfE and Ofsted have fully backed all the recommendations in the report on tackling workload including advice on reducing workload around appraisal and performance management.  

School's approach to data management must:

  • minimise or eliminate the number of pieces of information teachers are expected to compile
  • have simple systems for logging behaviour incidents and other pastoral information
  • review and reduce the number of attainment data collection points a year and how these are used – as a rule, it should not be more than two or three a year.

DfE workload videos

  • Tackling workload together

    Damian Hinds explains how the Department for Education is working with the profession, the teaching unions, Ofsted and others to reduce unnecessary teacher workload.

  • Working together on workload: planning

    School Standards Minister Nick Gibb joins Mary Bousted and Kevin Courtney, the joint general secretaries of the NEU, to explain how schools can reduce the burden of lesson planning, alongside a case study from Whitley Bay High School on their approach to shared planning.

  • Advice Workload meeting
    How to develop 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

  • Advice Marking
    Workload advice: marking

    The Independent Teacher Workload Review Groups were established by the DfE to report on, and suggest solutions to, unnecessary burdens associated with marking, planning and data management.

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    NEU comment on teacher workload

    Dr Mary Bousted, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, has commented on the publication of the Department for Education’s response to the Teacher Workload Advisory Group report on data.