Working Hours

How many hours must a teacher work? 

Teachers contracts include the terms of the School Teachers' Pay & Conditions Document which requires that teachers be available for work on 195 days each year, of which 190 are teaching days (the other 5 being for INSET). They are also required to be available for 1265 hours each year to be allocated reasonably across those days. These make up the directed hours, which are available for Headteachers to direct the work of teachers.
However, in addition, teachers must work "such reasonable additional hours as may be necessary to enable the effective discharge of the teacher’s professional duties". These are not subject to direction by Headteachers or managers.

What is included in the 1265 hours? 

The limit of 1265 hours must include all work directed by the Headteacher, including: teaching time, PPA allocated time, any additional non-contact or leadership/ management time, duties at breaks or before/after school, staff meetings, parents' evenings, INSET training days and Performance Management meetings. 
It does not include any additional time which teachers spend on planning, marking, assessment or other tasks related to the professional responsibilities of the role.

Am I entitled to a lunchbreak? 

All teachers are entitled to a break of reasonable length in between school sessions. This means that in most cases, those teachers not on the leadership scale are not paid for the time between school sessions and so cannot be directed to undertake any tasks during this time. Furthermore, teachers are at liberty to leave the school site during this time should they wish.
Teachers on leadership/AST/ETS scales are entitled to a break of reasonable length near the middle of the day, but this might not always be during school lunch times.

Can I be required to do a break duty? 

In most cases, teachers are paid for break times other than lunch breaks, and so can be required to attend to a duty in this time.

Can I be required to do a lunch duty?

Main scale and UPS-scale teachers are not paid for lunchtimes. Under the 1968 amendments to the Burgundy Book, no teacher can be required to supervise pupils at meal times in school. Those teachers offering to do a duty should be paid for this time under a separate agreement.

Is there a time limit on meetings? 

There are no limits on the amount of time that can be used for meetings in or after teaching hours. However, some unions suggest a limit of 1 meeting of no more than one hour in each week. It should be noted that this is union guidance and is not a statutory entitlement. In all cases, schools should ensure that all meetings are held within the limits of teachers' directed time.

Is there a limit to the number of meetings held each week? 

There are no limits on the number of meetings that a school can hold in one week. However, some unions suggest a limit of 1 meeting of no more than one hour in each week. It should be noted that this is union guidance and is not a statutory entitlement. In all cases, schools should ensure that all meetings are held within the limits of teachers' directed time.

Can I be directed to attend an evening event? 

This will depend on the nature of the events. Teachers are required to provide feedback to parents as part of their contract, and so can be required to attend parents' evenings. However, this does not extend to other events, such as promotional open evenings. These are not part of a teacher's statutory duties, and so cannot be directed.

Can I be directed to attend a weekend event? 

No. No teacher, at any level, can be required to attend an event on a Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holiday.

How many hours directed time do I have as a part-time member of staff? 

Part-time members of staff have a directed hours budget which matches their fractional pay amount. For example, a teacher on a 0.6 contract has a directed time budget of 759 hours per year. See also the part-time pay page.