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How many hours are we paid to work?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Orchid2457, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. Orchid2457

    Orchid2457 New commenter

    Hi All,
    Does anybody know how many hours a day a full time primary school teacher gets paid to work? Where would I find a definitive answer?

  2. Oldfashioned

    Oldfashioned Senior commenter

    whatever is directed per day from the annual 1265
    agathamorse and nomad like this.
  3. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    You are paid an annual salary not an hourly rate.

    If on STPCD you can be directed what to do for 1265 hours a year over 195 days (which mathematically is 6 hours 29 minutes a day, but there's no requirement that all days are of equal length). The 1265 hours includes morning/afternoon breaks but not lunch break.

    In addition your salary covers work you do in non-directed time, defined in STPCD as:

    "In addition to the [1265] hours … a teacher must work such reasonable additional hours as may be necessary to enable the effective discharge of the teacher’s professional duties, including in particular planning and preparing courses and lessons; and assessing, monitoring, recording and reporting on the learning needs, progress and achievements of assigned pupils."
    There is no pre-determined time you must spend on this additional work and it is up to you how much time you spend and when you do it. But it is not 'unpaid work' as sometimes claimed on here. Your salary includes this work.
  4. meggyd

    meggyd Senior commenter

    Reasonable additional hours? Discuss.
    agathamorse likes this.
  5. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    As many as it takes to get the job done properly.
  6. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    That would be nice, but the extra load placed on teachers in some schools means that some are having to do far more than is needed to get the job done. Not my experience, I hasten to add, but I was one of the lucky ones.
    BetterNow, agathamorse and hfromh like this.
  7. meggyd

    meggyd Senior commenter

    "Properly" should also be up for discussion.
    BetterNow, agathamorse and lardylady like this.
  8. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    There is no definitive answer in terms of a number. None.

    What follows is from the ACAS website.

    How many hours a week can I work?
    Most workers don't have to work more than 48 hours per week on average. If a worker agrees to work beyond the 48-hour limit they must put it in writing. This is known as an opt-out agreement.

    There is no obligation on a worker to sign an opt-out agreement and they should not suffer any detriment if they choose not to do so.

    Workers have the right to cancel an opt-out agreement by giving their employer a period of notice. This notice must be at least seven days, although a longer notice period may be set by the employer. If there is a longer notice period this must be clearly stated as a term of the opt-out agreement and cannot be longer than three months.

    The average working week is calculated by taking the average weekly hours over a 17 week reference period. This means that an employee may work more than 48 hours in some weeks without having to opt-out so long as the average does not exceed 48 hours.

    But how do you factor in the (theoretical) 12 weeks teachers have for holidays? You can see how difficult it is!

    If you worked 8 hours a day on a 6-day week then that's your 48. Let's say you aim for Monday to Friday working 8 to 5 and taking half an hour for lunch. That's 42.5 hours. Spread the other 5.5 over the weekend? A lot of people may still say you're not doing enough when they look at those 12 weeks and take them into account.

    I really don't know. My approach used to be to do as little as possible to satisfy myself the students were getting good value without suffering a guilty conscience. I don't think you can do that now though. From what I hear. You have to bow and scrape and wield different pens and put ticks in hundreds of boxes.

    But I still recommend doing just enough. What kind of drone/sad misery guts makes a good teacher?
  9. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Lead commenter

    Define properly
    agathamorse likes this.
  10. TrueFaith

    TrueFaith New commenter

    Your staff handbook should state what time you are expected to be on site in the morning, and when you are expected to be on site until in the afternoon on an ordinary day, IE no meetings/parents evening etc..

    Other than that, it is up to you when you work, where you work and for how long. Obviously, it is up to you to ensure that all books are marked and paperwork is completed...
    agathamorse likes this.
  11. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Lead commenter

    Sadly the 48 hours malarkey does not work for teachers and it is an average of 48hours over a 17 week period. When you take into account the holidays that will be in the 17 weeks then even if you are working 60HPW during term time it will be less than 48/week average.

    Of course you may or may not work during the holidays and you may or may not end up on average working 48+ but how do you prove it?
    Catgirl1964 and agathamorse like this.
  12. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I think if you're asking why a teacher isn't paid overtime for hours worked outside school hours you're going to be disappointed.
    A teacher is paid to do the work of teaching. That obviously is 'open-ended' how long that takes. They have 'directed time' as quoted in the annual 1265 above, over which they have no say. However like many other professions to do the job well, work outside that directed time will be needed.

    If you actually worked out the figures I e annual pay divided by that figure of 1265, you'd see that the actual pay per hour does reflect an acknowledgement that one needs to work outside those hours.
    Sundaytrekker likes this.
  13. FriarLawrence

    FriarLawrence Occasional commenter

    We're salaried professionals, not waged workers - 1265 is the amount of time in which we can be directed what to do, but beyond that a salaried professional is expected to get the job done in however long it takes.

    Saying that, there are limits. Far too often, the concept of "professionalism" is used by poor leaders to justify piling unreasonable workload onto staff. My personal view is that a 48-hour working week, 8-5 plus a little bit, is at the upper limit of reasonable expectation given our salaries and the stressful nature of the job. Other mileage may vary, I guess.
  14. Orchid2457

    Orchid2457 New commenter

    Thanks all. It’s for a form I’m completing that asks for an hourly rate of pay. X
  15. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    If a teacher doesn't have a good understanding of what is meant by something being done "properly" then the profession is indeed in a sorry state!

    Would you prefer "effectively"?
    JohnJCazorla and Orchid2457 like this.
  16. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    No it shouldn’t.

    Different teachers in the same school may well be on site for very different hours - depending on personal preference. As long as everything gets done (properly), it doesn’t matter how long teachers are in the building for.

    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    No. No. Absolutely not.

    Sorry Nomad, but with all respect - we cannot accept this. Its the main reason for overwork.

    We are paid to work X amount of hours.

    Being teachers, if the job takes X + Y amount of time, we work Z (Z = X+Y). The result? Overwork, exhaustion, people leaving in droves.

    In a sensible job, we say: 'I am being paid for X amount of hours work. I therefore have to do the best I can in that time. But when I have worked X amount of hours, I have to stop'. By which I mean - either someone pays us additional cash for working a further Y amount of hours - or the school just has to accept that 'I didn't have time to do that.'

    Yes - 'I didn't have time to do that' has to become an acceptable answer.

    Schools have to accept this and learn to prioritise.

    If we have reached a stage where lesson preparation and marking can no longer be done in our paid hours - well, that's a sorry pass. But teachers didn't add on all those other duties and expectations.
    jusch, Catgirl1964, corgie11 and 6 others like this.
  18. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Lead commenter

    Daily rate is defined in the STPC as annual salary divided it by 195. For hourly it would be fair to assume it's annual salary divided by 1265.
  19. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    It would be much easier to resist excessive workload if this were true but sadly teachers' contracts (if STPCD) don't do this.

    Teachers are paid to work:

    1265 hours directed time + "such reasonable additional hours as may be necessary to enable the effective discharge of the teacher’s professional duties ... "
    There is no cap on the "reasonable additional hours".

    Where workload demands require an unreasonable number of "additional hours" why aren't unions bringing a test case to court to force schools not to make unreasonable demands?

    STPCD only says that for supply teachers paid at a daily rate, not for permanent staff. It's probably as good an answer as any for OP to use on the form though, depending what the form is for.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
    agathamorse and Stiltskin like this.
  20. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Lead commenter

    I think the key words are "reasonable additional hours".

    As the STPC suggest they shouldn't have to work at weekends on bank holidays for most teachers those hours should be taken in relation to what's achievable and reasonable during the week (so not 12 hour days)

    *edit* As @Rott Weiler mentions, a test case would help immensely.

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