Angst at pupil reports

5th February 1999 at 00:00
The HMI-Accounts Commission report was based on interviews with more than 100 teaching and non-teaching staff, followed up by a postal survey of 1,307 staff from 153 schools and visits to schools.

Primary class teachers spend 205 hours a year on administration, while heads put in 450 hours. In secondary, the range is from 230 hours for teachers to 675 hours for depute heads. Primary teachers say only 10 per cent of administration time could be taken on by support staff. Secondary class teachers believe they could save just over 20 per cent.

The greatest dissatisfaction, cited by more than 40 per cent of teachers who responded to the questionnaire, was over the time spent on reporting pupils' performances to parents.

Class teachers in both primary and secondary estimated this took 50 hours a year. But reporting remains an essentially educational task and the study says less than 10 per cent of primary teachers' time could be saved by delegating to support staff, although this rises to almost 20 per cent in secondary schools.

Almost a third of primary teachers are fed up with spending more than 100 hours a year on forward planning. Again, the report estimates that only 8 per cent of their time could be saved by more administrative support.

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