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Do you or can you leave early if you ave no lessons?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by RennyLau, Apr 3, 2019.

  1. RennyLau

    RennyLau New commenter

    I'm currently on pgce and have a couple of afternoons were I don't have lessons. I have work to do!! But I'd prefer to do this work at home.

    Do you think this is generally frowned upon, to leave after lunch for example.

    Are you allowed to do it?
  2. meggyd

    meggyd Lead commenter

    No. You should remain on site for your allocated hours. Occasionally people get permission to leave early but this is most definitely not something you should be doing routinely as a Pgce student. If you have issues like child care it might be possible to negotiate. When are you going to meet with your mentors? Aren't you supposed to attend meetings like every other teacher?
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
  3. caitmarlow1

    caitmarlow1 New commenter

    You can't go home, you might be needed for something in the department or someone from elsewhere in the school may need to speak with you about a student.
    jlishman2158 and agathamorse like this.
  4. agathamorse

    agathamorse Occasional commenter

    Can't leave school to work at home, what if you're needed for emergency cover? What about after school meetings?
  5. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Your directed hours will be (for example) 08:15 to 15:45.

    If you are told your lunch break is 12:15 to 12:45 then you ought to be able to pop out to a local shop.

    Find out what the directed hours are for all staff and abide them. You do not go home during those hours. You stay put.
  6. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    If you are free last lesson, and are not required for cover (or to do a 'bus duty' etc after school), then there is no reason why you can't leave early* - provided the school is aware in case of an emergency. The best schools I worked in (some state and all the independent schools) allowed one to do so...They treated teachers as professionals who could be trusted to decide when & where they did their work.

    * In a couple of schools I worked in, leaving half an hour early meant one's commute home was significantly (45 mins or more) shorter. So it made sense when possible.
  7. RennyLau

    RennyLau New commenter

    Okay, seems like a big no in normal circumstances! Thank you!

    Meetings wise, the school I'm in tends to try and hold meetings at lunchtime so people don't have to stay after school.

    I'll stay put!
    jlishman2158, Pomza and agathamorse like this.
  8. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    This. You need to find out what School policy is. Very few that I know of allow staff to leave the premises during school hours. Other than during your lunch break.

    Though I see Frank Wolley has had different experiences.
    nomad, agathamorse, Jesmond12 and 2 others like this.
  9. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    You "don't have lessons"? Not really what you should be telling yourself. It isn't helpful. Think of this as non-contact time. It is working time. It is part of the working day. You just don't have contact with kids. But you're still at work and should be working.
  10. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Generally, yes.

    The only school I've worked in that allowed it was an Independent school.
    agathamorse, steely1 and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  11. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    gdw sums it up well! :D
  12. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Star commenter

    At this point, working at the school can be somewhat advantageous over at home. As you work through your planning, school based tasks, collecting evidence of meeting the standards and so on, and suddenly realise you need to speak to X or find out Y from the office or where Z is being at school means you can quickly do this.
  13. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Some kid complains to a Head of Year about you*. The HoY consults the timetable. Lo and behold, you've non-contact. They come looking for you for your version. But you've gone home!

    Yeah, that's really going to impress them.

    *That's but one example of why you absolutely NEED to be on the premises. And don't bother with, "Oh, they could call/email me." Forget it. Settle down and do your work.
  14. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Evidence of a rather closed mind, I fear.

    FWIW I worked in a large number of schools, and none of the best ones had a problem with this. I suspect those schools that do are often schools with significant problems and/or poor leadership.

    I always took the view that, if I would be working at home after school/at the weekends/in the holidays IN MY OWN TIME, then if I wanted to leave early (providing I wasn't required to be at school, and always after having 'signed out') to get to the bank before closure, to do some essential shopping, to avoid traffic and have an easier commute or even, yes, on a few occasions, to go to do something leisure related, then that was the pay off.
    BelleDuJour, Bentley89, Curae and 7 others like this.
  15. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Lead commenter

    My school used to do this under the old enlightened head.

    On the other hand with the new regime it is very different. When on a free last period and genuinely feeling ill (had been all day, I have a degenerative disease) I informed my line manager that I was feeling ill and needed to go home.

    A disciplinary investigation was started as I had informed my HOD and not a member of SLT.
    agathamorse likes this.
  16. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Lead commenter

    Whilst I agree with you I must say that I find working at school difficult as you are constantly being disrupted, even if you have somewhere to work during non contact time which I frequently don't.
  17. foxtail3

    foxtail3 Star commenter

    I think the consensus must be that you should remain on school premises during working hours. Can you use a staffroom or other room to work in. I understand that there can be interruptions at school, but I find there are more of them at home.

    As a PP said, it can be easier to ask someone directly, if you have a query, or find out information you need.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  18. madcatlady

    madcatlady Occasional commenter

    We have a policy at school. We can go out but we have to have permission from an SLT member and sign out.

    So yes, check school policy but probably the answer is you have to be there
  19. RennyLau

    RennyLau New commenter

    Crikey *grumpydogwoman, your name really lives up to your tone! The idea is not to go home and watch Jeremy Kyle! It is to go home and work! Just because some people find home more distracting doesn't mean others do.

    I see the consensus is no.... I'll keep watching JK on my laptop in the staffroom then
  20. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Star commenter

    Ah you've not found the hidden room yet! :)

    Yes, I agree getting disturbed is a problem and doing PPA time somewhere where you won't be easily disturbed is preferable (my experience is about 50:50 with heads who'd allow you to go off site). In the OP case though, as a student teacher, they're less likely to be disturbed so shouldn't be too bad a problem.

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