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Working hours (primary)

(28 Posts)
VodkaRevelation Wed 25-Sep-13 17:19:37

I just typed a post and it vanished so hope this doesn't duplicate!

So, I started a new job a year ago after a year out on maternity following a temp contract.

Last job was full time at a 2.5 form entry infant school. I would start a bit before 8 and 5 would be a late finish .

Current job is 0.4 at a small village primary (mixed year group classes) and I get in at half 7 and leaving before 6 is rare. I also seem to be doing as much in the evenings and on a weekend as I did when I was full time. This is normal for my colleagues too.

What hours do other people do at school and outside in primary teaching jobs? I feel on the verge of leaving as this is not what I thought it would be and things are not getting easier as time goes by.

I do love being in the classroom actually working with the children but everything else seems ridiculous!

HedgeHogGroup Wed 25-Sep-13 20:43:29

Headteacher. In at 7.30am and leave at 4pm or in at 8.30am and leave at 5pm.
Also, I chase my staff off the premises too. Teachers can always find something else to do - you need to find your 'good enough' cut-off point.
You are entitled to a work-life balance!

BranchingOut Thu 26-Sep-13 06:50:14

You set a good example Hedge!

I never managed to get this cracked when I was teaching. I was generally in sometime between 7.30 and 8.00, then left about 6.00. But I would always work in the evening and at weekends.

I think that workloads are better in larger schools, as there are more people to share the load.

redcaryellowcar Thu 26-Sep-13 06:57:04

I have a friend who is a teacher (secondary maths) who told me recently she is in school from 7.30am to 6pm. I was a bit amazed as she is recently married and hoping to have children, I think her plan would be to be a sahm when her babies we're small but I fear these long days are not helping. I used to teach (sec pe) so less marking but fixtures and practises filled after school. I tried to be in for 7.30/8 and if no fixture leave by 5.

HalfSpamHalfBrisket Thu 26-Sep-13 07:07:22

Village primary, FS, full time.

At school: It varies through the year but currently 7am/7.30am to 5, then 2-3 hours at home on Mon-Thurs (Friday is my night off).
I've just (6.30am) had an exchange of emails with my head at home as I'm drinking my breakfast tea.
I did about 5hrs last Sat and 9hrs on Sun.

I've never done so much but OFSTED is imminent so there is a lot of 'not wanting to let the school down' as a frightening amount of local school have gone straight from outstanding to 'requires improvement'.

I normally have a much more sensible work/life balance; I'm not sure how much longer I can keep this up & am starting to fantasise about jacking it all in.

GetStuffezd Thu 26-Sep-13 16:37:14

I get in at 6:15 when the site supervisor opens up and leave at 4:15 ish, provided there's no meeting. I rarely take work home but do mark through my lunch hour and breaks. It works for me as my brain is much more alive in the morning.

Inclusionist Thu 26-Sep-13 18:40:47

I get in at 8am (childcare constraints) and stay until what ever time needed (usually 6pm but could stay later) 2 nights a week, 5.30 latest one night a week and 3pm 2 nights a week (contract variation). I rarely work at home- although I do answer emails at all hours.

2kidsintow Thu 26-Sep-13 18:45:03

My childminder starts work at 8, so I get to work for quarter past. I'm neither the first or the last to leave.

We have to be in by 8.40, except on Mondays when we have a short meeting to start the week.

I work 4.5 days a week.
On days I am picking up my DD, I leave at half 4.
On other days I leave at 5.

I rarely taking marking or planning home, but don't mind looking for resources and ideas on an evening at home.

SilverApples Thu 26-Sep-13 18:47:32

My last job in primary, FT, 8am til 5.45pm as the school shuts at 6pm.
I agree that smaller schools are harder work when I worked in a village school I co-ordinated three subjects one of them a core.
That was in addition to working two or three hours out of school Mon-Fri and around 5 on Sunday.

missmapp Thu 26-Sep-13 18:50:31

FT in 2 form entry primary- In at half 7, leave at 5. Work a couple of hours week nights at home and an afternoon every weekend.

I mark at lunchtime / breaks but still have stuff to mark at home .

I have been teaching for nearly 20 years and my workload has increased massively in the last few years.

LindyHemming Fri 27-Sep-13 19:03:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Inclusionist Sat 28-Sep-13 08:08:22

Blimey Euphemia, that does sound hard.

My place has over 1000 kids (primary) and lots of people talk about 'moving to a small school' with misty eyes. I think the people who have only ever had year group partners to plan with, a full time TA of their own, 8 admin staff, 2 site staff and a massive team of dinner ladies to support them would get a rude shock!!!

LindyHemming Sat 28-Sep-13 08:13:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JuniorMint Sat 28-Sep-13 08:20:19

I'm full time, Year 3 and also SENCO and Maths coordinator. I generally get in between 7.30 and 7.45am and rarely leave before 5.30. Caretaker locks up at 6pm and I'm usually leaving then. I actually feel quite panicked if I have a meeting or a course etc to go to after school as then i have to leave early and it knocks me out of my usual routine so I'm chasing my tail catching up.

I then work for around an hour to an hour and a half each night at home, except Fridays, and then around 2-4 hours across the weekend (sometimes spread out, sometimes in one clump depending what else I'm doing).

Living not too far from the school really helps- I used to work in a school that took at least 45 mins and sometimes up to an hour each way, that was a NIGHTMARE of dead time added onto your day. Now my school is just ten mins drive- much better. Having a smaller class size has been brilliant so far this year with marking- I only have 19 children , whereas some colleagues have 29. When I get to the end of my pile of books I think to myself "Mrs X would have another ten books left now".

I'm actually quite worried for the future as I'm 9 weeks pregnant- obviously it's a little while off yet but when I return to work with a baby I just don't know how I'd be able to sanely maintain those hours! Something's got to give...

clam Sat 28-Sep-13 10:06:41

I think that a new job in a new school with, possibly, a new year group, will always be harder work than when you've been somewhere for a while and know the ropes. So don't despair, it will get easier.

I also think you have to accept that it's impossible to keep all your plates spinning at the same time and that some WILL fall (and smash!). Learn to multi-task and cut corners (I'm a past master at that!). Too many of us teachers are perfectionists, and that leads to unbearable stress if you're not careful.

almapudden Sat 28-Sep-13 10:19:47

I get in at 7.30 and leave between 5 and 5.30. I almost never work at home, though.

VodkaRevelation Sat 28-Sep-13 10:28:25

Thanks for your replies everyone. I think, and it was what I suspected was the case, that being in a smaller school is the crux of the problem.

Clam- I don't think it will get easier. It's been a year and I know about spinning plates and creating a work/home balance and I was great at that before- at larger school. I didn't have to plan at home. Now all my planning is done at home as there just isn't time to do it at work.

I just don't think I can carry on like this and fully enjoy the time I have at home with my son and husband as work is in my mind too often.

I'm just not suited to working at a small village school. I think I want to do supply (which I have done before) and then think about getting a full time job when my son, and any future children, are in full time education.

Thanks again for your replies- they have really helped!

clam Sat 28-Sep-13 11:11:44

I've often wondered whether a small school must not mean an excessive workload. I've only ever worked in 2-form entry primaries and the workload is therefore shared out.

Personally I would hate to do supply (and I would check out how many schools are actually using them these days-I've heard anecdotally that they're getting by with HLTAs and unqualified teachers instead).
Why not look around for a larger school instead?

VodkaRevelation Sat 28-Sep-13 12:03:08

I am also looking around for a larger school! I think supply would give me the chance to move about a bit though, get to know a few local schools and get my head sorted a bit re where I want to work! I know a couple of teachers round here who get a steady stream of work too so there is worn about.

I really enjoyed it when I did it before. I went back to the same schools a few times which helps with not feeling lost all the time! I also, always, got to leave at 4ish- often before as most teachers don't want you messing with the marking!

BranchingOut Sat 28-Sep-13 12:21:10

I would also agree that my most manageable years of teaching were when I was working in a two form entry or parallel year group set up.

Henny1712 Sat 28-Sep-13 13:26:41

I'm in a primary school and I get to work at 6:45am and leave at 5pm. Exhausting and I never feel like I'm reducing my to do list!

SilverApples Sat 28-Sep-13 14:18:26

A lot of schools wouldn't be open at 6.45am though, unless you are a head with keys.
Worst situation I ever had was working in a small rural school, portakabin classroom and my own keys. Without any restraints on going in and out, the hours I put in were stupid.

LindyHemming Sat 28-Sep-13 14:56:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Inclusionist Sat 28-Sep-13 15:01:30

We have fob entry. The teacher's fobs work 7am - 7pm on week days only. SLT's fobs work 24/7. Thanks for that, whoever though that was a good idea!! grin

Inclusionist Sat 28-Sep-13 15:02:26


We do have more than one!!

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