Why headteachers will be hard at work this summer

12th July 2015 at 07:00
teacher workload
Whatever sector they're in, headteachers rarely get the luxury of a relaxing break. Sam Northwood, from Nelson Thomlinson School in Cumbria, explains why working during the holidays is essential for his peace of mind

I would guess that I will spend about 144 hours working during the summer. I may choose not to do some things (depending on how much energy I have), but this would simply be adding to my workload in September.

I think heads should be expected to come in for a couple of days for the A-level and GCSE results to support their administrative and pastoral staff. I also need to check if there are any problems and be able to respond to concerned parents, as well as going through the examination results and discussing any concerns with my senior team.

In terms of what is expected, I would simply advise headteachers to do what they feel is necessary to set up the school for the start of term.

I come in before staff return for their training at the start of the autumn term. This is essentially to meet my senior management team to tie up any loose ends and to ensure plans are in place to get through the first few manic weeks of September.

Naturally, I will plan some lessons too, because I teach, just like any other member of staff. And I might also prepare some assemblies.

My family accept that I will be busy on and off. As far as I'm concerned, it is essential for my peace of mind. Nobody has told me to do this stuff; I choose to do it because I see it as my job.

For views from headteachers in different sectors, read the full feature in the 10 July issue of TES. You can read it on your tablet or phone, or by downloading the TES Reader app for Android or iOS. Or pick it up at all good newsagents.


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