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Two week working pattern

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by carolineramsay78, Nov 29, 2019.

  1. carolineramsay78

    carolineramsay78 New commenter

    Hi all.. I’m returning to work after maternity leave in March next year. I recently requested to go part time - specifically 0.8
    I met with the head who has offered my 0.7. The school operates a two week timetable so would want me 4 days one week and 3 days another. This is the working pattern done by a supply teacher currently. Apparently finances won’t allow for an additional day. This is hugely impractical from a childcare perspective as it’s irregular.
    I was just wondering whether anybody else has found themselves in this situation and has been able to make it work?
    3.5 days both weeks is not an option.
    Thanks in advance.
  2. speechcompanyinfo

    speechcompanyinfo New commenter

    The two week working pattern is a nightmare. I experienced it at a private school, where I taught before looking after family members, and the staff were in a quandry as to how to make it work. The children were reduced to tears and frustration and hopelessness by it and the strategy to survive was to start each class with "Right, does everyone know which day it is on the two week cycle?".. If this contract doesn't work out for you, and if it is possible to find a school that works on a normal one week cycle, then its so much better to jump ship and go for the one week cycle. The stress is really bad with the two week cycle.
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Are the three days at least the same both weeks?
    Would they consider using you for supply on the spare day when they can? I'm guessing you may end up having to pay for the four days both weeks at nursery, and that might at least offset it a bit.

    There's a longer-term question, too. Obviously this year the timetable is already in place. Is the intention that you would stay on 0.7 permanently? Is the timetabler able to try and get your two weeks matched? (Timetablers vary in the degree to which they are prepared to try and make things work for part-timers. Two week timetables also vary in how different the weeks are - some just have minor swaps between the two weeks, which makes it easier.) When would you know your days for September? Would that be in time to secure any childcare changes needed?
    strawbs likes this.
  4. maggie m

    maggie m Senior commenter

    Normal one week cycle?????? For 20 years I have worked in secondary schools on a two week cycle. It is very common in Essex/London. Everyone copes, our year 7's quickly get used to it. I do know of schools that do a seven day cycle....now that is a nightmare. Part timers in our place get the same days each week but that does mean a lot of split classes. A friend's daughter faced a similar situation to you when she returned part way through a year but it got sorted satistfactorily the next year.
  5. muso2

    muso2 Occasional commenter Community helper

    Ditto, in 15 years of teaching in different counties I've always had two week timetables. Part time teachers have the same days on each week and a good timetabler should try to minimise shared classes. Returning partway through the year makes it hard to accommodate your request in the best way. Hopefully when they prepare the September timetable if will work better for you. In the meantime, the suggestion above about doing cover on the spare day is a good one if the school would consider it.
    Unfortunately, although many schools have a two week timetable, nurseries and childminders don't, and schools need to realise the implications of this.
  6. meggyd

    meggyd Lead commenter

    I did 0.7 on a 2 week timetable. Every Wed off and every other Fri. It was lovely, never having to work more than two days in a row. Long weekends were also possible. My kids were older though so no nursery issues.
    576 likes this.

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