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Working week lengthens

The overwhelming majority of lecturers are required to work more than 35 hours a week, including more than 24 hours class contact, according to a survey by the Colleges' Employers' Forum.

The findings concur with a survey by the college lecturers' union NATFHE last month in showing an acceleration in the number of local deals being reached. The union said nearly one third of colleges had agreed local contracts.

But the CEF analysis of returns from 240 colleges suggests there has been a more radical departure from the Silver Book conditions of local education authority days.

Only 20 colleges said they had set below 800 hours in the annual contract (the Silver Book was 756). Only 22 said weekly contact hours were below 24. Five reported having a minimum working week of under 35 hours.

Most colleges have given some flexibility for staff to do some college work at home. But only nine said they would allow staff to spend fewer than 200 working days in college.

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