1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Losing PPA in last week

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Grandsire, Dec 17, 2015.

  1. Grandsire

    Grandsire Star commenter

    Compared to other workplace dilemmas on this forum, this one hardly registers, but is it normal for teachers to lose their PPA time in the last week of term? I'm a bit annoyed - it may be Christmas, but I've got so much to do to prepare for services and other things that an afternoon away from the classroom would be a real blessing, but it was decided that as it was the last week, we didn't need it. Well, okay...
    ...but then it turns out that members of the SMT (yes, the ones who decided to cancel PPA) have their PPA still. It's the end of term, everyone's tired and grumpy - so do I say anything, or just log it and flag it up next time it's suggested we lose our PPA?
  2. -myrtille-

    -myrtille- Occasional commenter

    I think a little bit of flexibility is needed in the last week of term when there may be events you are involved in which happen to clash with your PPA. But if they've just systematically taken PPA from all teaching staff except SMT, that's not very fair.

    I would possibly leave it at this stage but next time a situation arises which could cause you to lose PPA, drop them a polite email reminding them that you already lost PPA time in December and would like to know when this time will be made up, as it is something you are entitled to, and you need to use the time to do x y z.

    A couple of weeks ago I lost some PPA due to leading an exam in my subject area, sent a similar message and was then told that later in the week I would have gained time as they would not use me for invigilation/cover when other exams were taking place.
  3. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    still a workplace dilemma though!

    I think it is a bit out of order to be fair. Totally understand if it is a carol concert/nativity play (you must be primary) over your PPA. That is just the luck of the draw. Taking it unilaterally seems to have no purpose. Who normally covers it? What are they doing?

    I would speak to my union rep, who can and should be bringing this up with the HT on behalf of the staff. Not talking going to regional or nothing, or threatening action etc. but at least flagging it up.
    FrankWolley likes this.
  4. sjk17

    sjk17 New commenter

    I wouldn't bother. When I worked in the UK we had no PPA in the first or last week's of every term. If we really needed time, then it could be requested but otherwise that was that. Why not just put your case forward and see what happens?
  5. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Annoying and frustrating! Could almost seem like the Last Straw when you are juggling report-writing with making haloes for the angels.

    First and last weeks, if they are part weeks, can often lead to inequalities in PPA. Mon-Wed only in school, all those who have PPA on those days get full PPA even though only doing part weeks, whereas those whose PPA comes at the end of the week get nothing. Often it balances out over the year, mind you. This is the Even-Out part of your school's PPA Policy*.

    But cancelling some but not all PPA seems weird. Especially as they seem to have done it without consultation. Unless there is an emergency, PPA cannot be unilaterally cancelled as it is an entitlement. Or at least, it is in schools operating under STPCD . . . Attached

    Guaranteed planning and preparation time
    54.5. All teachers who participate in the teaching of pupils are entitled to reasonable periods of Planning, Preparation and Assessment (PPA) time as part of the 1265 hours referred to in paragraph 53.5 or pro rata equivalent (as the case may be) to enable the discharge of the professional responsibilities of teaching and assessment. PPA time must be provided in units of not less than half an hour during the school’s timetabled teaching week and must amount to not less than 10% of the teacher’s timetabled teaching time. A teacher must not be required to carry out any other duties during the teacher’s PPA time.

    So I would talk to the school union rep and ask him/her to enquire when this PPA is going to be paid back. Not this term, of course!

    And meanwhile, enjoy what remains of the term, with all the haloes and shepherds' crooks looking perfect!

    Best wishes

    *PPA Policy Your school does has one, doesn't it? ;)


    Attached Files:

  6. sofia_sen

    sofia_sen Occasional commenter

    Same here...I didn't have any in my first week and it looks like this week is not going to happen either. I had the back luck that our Christmas performance was during my PPA time and art & music lessons were canceled because those teachers are busy with other classes' performances.

    I am fine with it, this happens sometimes and in my school it's an exception. We always get our PPA time and if it not possible for whatever reason, we are given extra time the next week or get paid those hours. If you feel that this is quite the norm or unfair, I would raise it with your HOS.
  7. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    In the last week SMT or TAs could cover your PPA. Good grief! It happens every year! Christmas!

    Three first weeks of term in every year and three last weeks of term. No flamin' excuse whatsoever.

    What are they paid for if not to do timetabling? Pitiful. As union rep I'd have had something to say. Pathetic!

    I'd be spitting. I am spitting on your behalf. No, it's not on. It's not an emergency. I'd be kicking up a fuss. Thin end of the wedge. Not to be tolerated.
    Compassman likes this.
  8. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    A former colleague was talking to me the other day about a similar thing. She complained but was met with a list of other teachers who were happy to lose their PPA. Glad to say she's stuck to her guns and someone else is covering now.

    Too many HTs are taking the p**s and too few teachers are standing up for their rights. This is why teachers are being walked all over.
    Lara mfl 05 and HelenREMfan like this.
  9. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Good for her! Too damned right.

    Complain, complain, complain. You are in the right.

    Happy? Happy my left buttock. Cowed into submission. Behave like a sheep and that's how you'll be treated.
    Compassman likes this.
  10. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    SMT treating themselves differently?

    But if course.

    It's good to be the King!

  11. Grandsire

    Grandsire Star commenter

    Thanks for all your replies. Here's what I did - I took the time this morning, got my TA to cover the lesson with a DVD and a craft activity she prepared, and went and did other things, feeling completely justified. No one seemed to notice, except for the fact that other things happened more smoothly because I had that time. I haven't spoken with the senior member of staff who cancelled my PPA but kept their own, but I won't forget - from now on I will be insisting on the non-contact time I'm entitled to (except where I choose to give it up), no matter what other people do. Merry Christmas, folks.
  12. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    Reminds me of an over promoted Acting then Assistant Head who loved to call meetings in my non- contact time for Heads of Year etc - I really resented meetings for meeting's sake so the AH could send a memo to the HT or write up a cracking game plan! The Senco was the same with a non contact timetable at circa £48K salary....... nice job if you could get it! Said Senco was A1 at coming out with management speak platitudes (quick walking speed around school holding a clipboard looking busy worked well too ! )
    chey likes this.
  13. Coolgiraffe

    Coolgiraffe Occasional commenter

    That's exactly what I do Grandsire! If they don't give it to me I take it in some form or another whilst I'm in class to get jobs done.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  14. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I was going to suggest that but thought, if you didn't have your own TA, you might have felt mighty disgruntled.

  15. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Is that allowed?

    I mean, are you allowed to just abandon your class to someone else in that way?

    Just wondering . . .

    Best wishes

  16. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    With Christmassy things going on like pantos,plays etc then the loss of an odd PPA if it only happens rarely should be tolerable although if SLT are not doing their bit and losing their s too then this does seem unfair!
    What can you do about it? The climate that exists in some schools, on this one maybe you are best not saying anything lest you become a target!
  17. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    It's totally allowed. I don't think they were abandoned. In fact, they definitely were NOT abandoned.
  18. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    However, if you leave an untrained teacher to take your classes then you can't complain if suddenly that is how all classes are covered.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  19. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    It's problematic. Many teachers would prefer their TAs to cover than get supply. It seems to be better for the children. That was true in Special. The continuity and personal relationships were vital. I can't remember ever having had a TA who wasn't better than the very best supply teacher.

    For an extended absence I'd want a teacher. For a day? No. Two days? No. Weeks? Yes.
    ScotSEN likes this.
  20. Sillow

    Sillow Lead commenter

    At my previous school teachers were not allowed to leave their class with the TA for ANY reason. Small groups, yes. Whole class, no.

Share This Page