We want to see a greater staff presence around school at break and at both ends of the day. But how much should we reasonably agree to do as part of our working week? And at what point does it become an extra duty that we should get paid for?
In all the schools where I've taught, a high level of staff presence during break and at both ends of the day has had a big impact in reducing incidents of poor behaviour, resulting in a significant reduction in time taken in dealing with secondary issues. If staff can appreciate this, they can be encouraged to regard it as part of their daily duty that can easily become part of a weekly rota.
Caution - read your contract. If you agree to go beyond your contract you are in effect changing the terms of that contract. If you subsequently decide that you no longer wish to undertake such duties you are in breach of that contract. This is called "being a mug". Let this be a lesson.
In the present climate of industrial action, it is important to know where your contractual duties end and your non-contractual ones start. Moreover, it is equally important to be collective on such matters; you don't want to become exposed and vulnerable. So don't go putting your hand up for anything until you have a crystal clear picture of where you stand
Margaret, East Sussex
Q: As a secondary English teacher, I am constantly told by other subject colleagues that I must have one of the heaviest marking workloads in the school. Should all mainscale subject teachers get the same amount of time for marking and preparation? Or do some of us deserve more time for marking?
Q: Pupils are increasingly missing our lessons to go on trips during the school day, organised by other departments. Our subject rarely takes pupils away from other areas. Am I unreasonable to object to this constant disruption to the curriculum?
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