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School days to get longer

Discussion in 'Education news' started by phlogiston, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    When that happened did you really believe it would last!
    install and delnon like this.
  2. delnon

    delnon Lead commenter

    I never believe anything a politician says.
    Unless it's "I'm a liar!"
  3. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I believe you are right Florian, that the Government are probably not "expecting" teachers to provide these activities. However, they are providing funds for only 25% of schools to provide these facilities.
    How will the large majority of other schools manage this?
    A typical secondary of 1200 pupils will require 40 members of staff every day if the group sizes are 30 - more if the groups are sensible sizes.
    This could easily add a good 15% to the payroll (assuming 20% increase in teaching time but not funded at QTS rates)

    Will schools be able to find this number of suitable staff on the sort of contract (5 hours a week) that is needed? Will schools have funding to deal with the extra admin associated with all these staffing costs?

    Who will be responsible for ensuring that all pupils participate and behave properly?
    I cannot see how this will actually happen without teachers giving their support.

    I think that an hours properly managed enrichment time could work wonders. In happier times, I was glad to offer my own expertise to give enrichment to willing pupils, and it was appreciated by the managements of the schools I worked in. In part this was payback for the enrichment my own education had from after school sport and music. However the world has changed, I was unable to do the after school stuff in the bleak years as a consequence of workload.

    The big questions are: if only a few cherry picked schools get the funding, how will the others make it work?
    Will even those schools get enough funding?
    Will the funding continue or will it be cut off (like the last lot of sport funding) the moment something else becomes fashionable?
  4. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    The proposal is purely voluntary. Those that want to can apply for funding. Those that don't can continue to close their doors at 3.15 or whenever.

    But I agree that there are many unanswered questions. I can imagine much disquiet if teachers running co-curricular activities from their own goodwill in one school (as happens in many, many schools) discover that the school on the other side of town is paying staff to do the same job.

    Incidentally, while Osborne claimed that the extended day, where provided, would be compulsory for pupils, the White Paper says no such thing.
  5. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    This was the case when extra support was paid for!
  6. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    I currently run the school cricket team. In other years I have run football, tennis and other outdoor pursuits. I enjoy this stuff because it isn't normal curriculum stuff for the kids and for me. The last thing I want to do is spend another hour trying to cram science into their heads, especially if it will be unpaid!
  7. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    Where do you get the idea that you will have to cram science into their heads? The only activities mentioned in the white paper are sport, arts and debating. Last time I looked, cricket, football and tennis were all sports. Would you not like to be paid for running the sports activities you mention?
  8. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    When the ill-fated 'enrichment hour' was made compulsory at a school near me, the largest problem at the primary level (it was an all-through academy) was the logistics. The activity groups were not class groups, but (as far as was practicable) the activities chosen by the pupils. So at 3.15, over 300 children, housed in 2 buildings with a car park between, had to get themselves to the correct place for their activity; not difficult for Y6, but almost impossible for 60 reception children. They then had to wait for the required member of staff to arrive - staff having a choice between ensuring all their class had set off for their activity groups before going to their own, or abandoning their class in order to be there to meet their activity group.

    We tried all sorts. One method involved ending the previous lesson early, then sending groups from their class with TA support. That took forever! Then we all met in the two school halls, and activity groups were sent from there to where they needed to be. That worked better - apart from dealing with the latecomers.

    Then once you had your group, you registered them - only to find some were missing. Were they absent? Skiving? In school but legitimately unable to stay that evening? Lost? (That happened more than once.) With all staff working with groups, it was hard to obtain the required information.

    But by far the hardest thing was dealing with the end of the session. The children weren't in their classes, and parents found it hard to track down their child - especially if they had 3 or 4 who were in different buildings from normal. Staff could only release children to their parents, so it was often 20 or 30 minutes after the end of the session before all children were collected. Yes, we sent letters home to tell parents where to meet their children, but it just didn't work.

    Then we'd just get into a routine when the activities & groups would change, and we'd go through it all again!

    Of course, if we had kept the children in their classes, or even FS - KS1 - LKS2 - UKS2 it would have been easier. But, no, children had to have (as far as possible) free choice.
  9. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    Just getting through the school day is enough for me. The Chase is on the telly when I get home but for the first couple of months it was on I never knew how it ended. I would wake up half way through the evening news with a cold cup of tea still on the coffee table.
    hhhh likes this.
  10. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    You are Nicky Morgan and I claim my prize!
    hhhh and delnon like this.
  11. install

    install Star commenter

    [QUOTE="florian gassmann, post: 11622696, member: My point is that pupils are perfectly capable of staying awake for another hour and even benefitting from co-curricular activities, rather than hanging around outside the local sweet shop or MacDonalds until their parents get back from work.


    So its Baby Sitting / Child Minding Exercise....and nothing more...
    delnon likes this.
  12. install

    install Star commenter

    Clearly - this is Child Minding .....aimed at keeping children out of trouble....
    delnon likes this.
  13. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    That's very insulting of all the thousands of teachers who give up their time to run after-school sports teams, choirs, orchestras, debating societies, gardening clubs and so forth. Why do you have such a low opinion of their efforts?
  14. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Presumably they do it as volunteers, and the pupils who attend are keen to learn about or play the sport, activity etc.

    Make it compulsory for both staff & pupils and you destroy that set-up, and change it irrevocably... It will become a chore for both sides, and essentially just another lesson, with all the behaviour problems and the bureaucracy associated with schools these days.

    Bet OfSTED will inspect them too...
    delnon likes this.
  15. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    Please quote the paragraph in last week's white paper which stipulates that the extended day will be compulsory for staff.
  16. delnon

    delnon Lead commenter

    When OFTWIT was first inflicted on schools, inspection of voluntary activities was included in their remit.
    I unvolunteered at once.
    FrankWolley likes this.
  17. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    If you look at post #6, you'll see I have answered this.

    But, I wouldn't be convinced that some HTs won't try to make it compulsory, possibly if they aren't one of the 25% who get funded, but their nearest neighbouring school does - tempting for Heads to try & compete with the 'ordinary' staff...

    FWIW I suspect that the start of compulsory (for pupils) after school classes will hasten the demise of voluntary ones. We'll see.
  18. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    Provision of co-curricular activities remains an important criterion in ISI inspections - breadth of education is one of the things that helps get pupils from independent schools into the top universities. Heaven forbid that teachers in state schools should help their pupils succeed !
  19. florian gassmann

    florian gassmann Star commenter

    Exactly. Which is why I wonder why you have now changed your mind and are talking about the extended day becoming compulsory for staff. I think you were much nearer the mark in post #6.

    There is nothing in the white paper about the extended day being compulsory for pupils or for staff. I do wish people would actually read the white paper rather than trying to second-guess what it says.

    By that token, HTs whose schools currently offer little or nothing in the way of co-curricular should already forcing their staff to run out-of-school activities because their nearest neighbouring school does so. Do you have any examples?
  20. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    I think the last sentence is uncalled for - as someone who worked in both state and independently schools, I often thought that almost all state school teachers I worked with could teach successfully in independent schools, but far fewer vice-versa.

    And I knew very, very few teachers who didn't want their pupils to succeed, and the vast majority went out of their way to help them, usually doing far more than their contracts required.
    Anonymity likes this.

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