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Support for teacher workload gathers pace

Nicky Morgan has announced the chairs and members of three new workload review groups

Posted by Stephanie Broad | October 07, 2015 | People, policy, politics

Work is gathering pace to address some of the biggest concerns raised by teachers through the government’s workload challenge, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan recently announced. 

Thousands of teachers shared experiences, ideas and solutions on their unnecessary workload by taking part in the workload challenge survey - the biggest Department for Education (DfE) consultation of its kind in a decade, which generated more than 44,000 responses. 

In February, a series of commitments were published designed to help tackle the root causes of unnecessary workload

The three new review groups will look at the top issues that teachers said caused the most bureaucracy - marking, planning and resources, and data management. 

The review groups are:

  • the Marking Policy Review Group - which will look at the types of marking practices being carried out in schools that are successfully raising standards without generating unnecessary workload, with a focus on the implications of certain practices such as ‘deep marking’
  • the Planning and Resources Review Group - which will consider the impact of lesson planning and use of resources in schools to see how effective practice can improve attainment and reduce workload
  • the Data Management Review Group - which will develop principles for good in-school data management, including how pupil progress is monitored. This group will build on the recommendations from the Commission on Assessment Without Levels whose report was published on 17 September 

The chairs of each group are:

  • Dawn Copping, Headteacher at Shaw Primary Academy, Thurrock - marking policy review group
  • Kathryn Greenhalgh, Director of Maths at Outwood Grange Academies Trust - the planning and resources review group
  • Lauren Costello, Executive Managing Director for Education Strategy within the White Horse Federation, Swindon - the data management review group 

Nicky Morgan said: “I want to ensure teachers’ can focus on what they do best - inspiring young people - not on the bureaucracy and paperwork that I know can make their working lives difficult.

“Through the workload challenge we have identified the main factors behind teacher workload and we now have a package of measures to help address the root causes. 

“The review groups will build on those commitments by specifically looking in more depth at the three biggest concerns that teachers raised - marking, planning and resources, and data management - and I look forward to their recommendations.” 

The review groups are expected to report back to the Secretary of State in late spring 2016.

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