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Watch: Nick Gibb tells you how to cut workload

DfE launches online toolkit – including a video featuring the schools minister – to help schools cut teachers' workload

Damian Hinds can change legislation to ease the burden on teachers, says Yvonne Williams

DfE launches online toolkit – including a video featuring the schools minister – to help schools cut teachers' workload

The Department for Education has today launched a series of online resources designed to help cut workload in schools.

They include a video about planning featuring schools minister Nick Gibb and Mary Bousted and Kevin Courtney, the joint general secretaries of the NEU teaching union.

It says that individual lesson planning is not required by the DfE or Ofsted.


The DfE said the free online toolkit, which has been developed with teachers, school leaders and technology experts, will give:

  • Advice and workshops on the most burdensome tasks such as pupil feedback and marking, planning and resources, and data management;
  • Ready-made tools to help schools quickly implement new policies, and cut down on time-consuming tasks such as email communication; and
  •  A series of case studies to share knowledge of how schools across the country have used technology to streamline processes.

The publication of the toolkit follows the pledge by education secretary Damian Hinds to headteachers in March to “strip away” pointless tasks to allow teachers to “focus on what actually matters”.

Today, he said teachers don’t choose to teach because they “want to do endless hours of data entry or deep marking”.

Teachers 'should focus on what really matters'

He added: “I believe we need to get back to the heart of successful teaching – to strip away the workload that doesn’t add value and give teachers the time to focus on what actually matters, the pupils in front of them.” 

Liz Whetham, headteacher at Holy Trinity Primary School in Halifax, worked on toolkit development.

She said: “Trialling the toolkit in my school has had a positive impact on teacher workload, feedback has been extremely positive and teachers are reporting a reduction in the pressure they feel, and number of things on their ‘to-do list’”

Lesley Birch, executive principal of Cambridge Primary Education Trust said the toolkit includes “focused opportunities to identify perceived ‘pinch points’ within a school’s yearly calendar, encouraging staff to review the impact of what they do to reduce workload and pressure”.


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