Talking point

13th April 2001 at 01:00
How easy would it be to implement a 35-hour week work-to-rule action? Nic Barnard asks teachers at the ATL conference.

Roger Jermy, head of biology and exams secretary, Churchdown school, Gloucester: "I'm 110 per cent in sympathy, but there's no way I could cut my week down to 35 hours. Sometimes I get 11 or 12 phone calls on Fridays from staff who can't face the next week. Things that have to go are meetings and unnecessary paperwork. But sport would be badly hit and and societies and clubs would go."

Simon Hawthorne, newly qualified teacher, Edward Pauling primary, Hounslow, London: "There's a definite need for the hours to be cut. I'm moving out of primary ino secondary next year because I find planning for so many subjects so difficult."

Liz Colston, senior manager and Year 6 teacher, Hither Green primary, Lewisham, south London: "I work a 10-hour day but a lot of that is my choice.But some heads are very demanding and this action would stop that. Teachers would hopefully feel empowered."

David Belfield, design and technology teacher, Cowplain comprehensive, Hampshire: "The thing that concerns most teachers is the amount of preparation they have to do. There's preparation you need to do the job, but there is also extra preparation in order to fulfil school development plans, which may not be necessary."

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