About | 21.06.2021 | By paul_simpson

A member has a concern about excessive paperwork requirements

A member has asked a question which may resonate with other colleagues:

We have been asked to do all reports online which is fine, but on top of that we have to do a termly update on everything we have done.

For every single report that we have done in which we have set any targets in listening, receptive language, expressive language, grammar, vocab, social/emotional development, learning etc. we have to list whether the target has been ‘Achieved, Working Towards or Not Applicable’ (because we didn’t choose to set one in that area) plus we have to copy and paste all visit notes into the one report from the entire term.

We’ve been told it’s non-negotiable, and that it’s possibly for Ofsted? but we do not know who wants it or why? it doesn’t measure anything really – not like data collections.

My union is supporting reducing paperwork, but I need to know exactly what is expected of us

The Consultant replies:

Your situation is troubling.

The School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions document 2020 says that all employers should consider the “workload and work-life balance” of employees.

You should definitely contact your local Union rep. All Teaching Unions will have a view on this, eg https://neu.org.uk/workload-advicehttps://www.nasuwt.org.uk/advice/conditions-of-service/workload/advice-guidance-on-the-workload-reduction-toolkit/workload-reduction-toolkit-stage-two.html

In relation to the termly update:

Do you have the right tools for the right job – the appropriate hardware and software to efficiently fulfil your reasonable duties?  This is a useful summary on role requirements https://app.croneri.co.uk/topics/roles-and-responsibilities-teaching-staff/indepth and see https://www.educationsupport.org.uk/stress-teachers-help-support.

Employers should encourage the principle of ‘do once and share’, rather than duplicate data entry.  Even back in 2018 the Secretary of State for Education wrote a letter about the importance of reducing workload (click here to read it).  The principles apply to peripatetic (unattached) teachers too and it may be worth applying the workload toolkit to your role, see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/school-workload-reduction-toolkit and https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/reducing-school-workload.