John Rutter

School timetabling for beginners

Stepping up to write the school’s schedule is a fast track to losing friends. But while it’s impossible to keep everyone happy, John Rutter has some advice to minimise the pain

How to take stress out of planning school timetables

The dark art of school timetabling remains a mystery to all who have not actually written one – an arcane pursuit at the best of times, never mind when a pandemic has been thrown into the mix.

It is a pursuit that deploys language indecipherable to mere mortals: blocks, triples, bands, carousels, disjoints, fit points, homogeneous and heterogeneous options, schematics and principles of compatibility. It is the preserve of the depute (normally, although in a number of cases, the principal teacher of maths or, God forbid, the headteacher), who will lock their door from March through to April ...

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