Decision details

Fair Workload Commitment for Schools

Decision status: For Determination

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


Further to Minute 33 of the previous meeting the Director of Children’s Services, Brighter Futures for Children (BFfC), submitted a report on the Fair Workload Commitment for Schools.

The report stated that work had been carried out with schools and professional associations to establish a framework of guidance, and a core set of principles governing a Fair Workload Charter for staff working in schools.  This guidance had reflected a commitment to ensuring that workloads were reasonable but that the way this manifested itself was flexible to meet the diverse needs and working patterns of schools and teachers.

The work-life balance of staff in schools was a high priority for school managers, staff, the local authority and trade unions.  It was an area that needed to be monitored and managed, with individual schools being supported in finding strategies that worked for them.  The Reading Pledge had been consulted on with Headteachers, the authority and trade unions to demonstrate a commitment to finding and maintaining a fairer work and life balance for all staff.  It provided flexibility for schools to find what worked best for their staff and their school ethos.  The aim of the Pledge was to achieve a consensus of staff who felt valued and supported and who felt they had control over managing their workload.  This would help support the wellbeing of staff and would contribute to the recruitment and retention of staff.  The Pledge provided a set of core principles that all parties had committed to and these were set out in the report.

The report set out a number of initiatives that provided examples of current practice that were in place and that had been gathered from Headteachers in the Borough across both primary and secondary schools.  Such strategies had been offered as examples that might be adopted and adapted to fit the ethos of individual schools to support a Fair Workload culture for staff and to promote a positive work-life balance.  This was not intended to be an exhaustive list and schools would continue to adapt and were free to identify approaches that worked for them.

The Committee discussed the report and requested that an update report detailing how the Reading Pledge was working be submitted to the meeting on 8 April 2020.

At the invitation of the Chair Alison McNamara, Teacher, Panel Secretary: Education and Community Unions, addressed the Committee.

Resolved –

(1)     That the Fair Workload Commitment for Schools be approved;

(2)     That an update report be submitted to the meeting on 8 April 2020.

Publication date: 14/10/2019

Date of decision: 04/04/2019

Decided at meeting: 04/04/2019 - Adult Social Care, Children's Services and Education Committee

Accompanying Documents: