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What are teachers’ must-have items at the start of term? (This, and other findings…)

11 January 2022

Remember Tappers: over the next few months we are trialling a Random Gifting Game on Teacher Tapp!

If you hit 100, 1000, 2000, 3000 (and so on) questions answered, we will send an email saying we want to send you a gift. Fill in the form, and wait for something lovely to arrive 🙂 It doesn’t rely on streaks, just questions answered, so keep tapping!

Right onto results…

1. Start of term

Was it just us, or did that four-day week seem a lot longer? With many of you back teaching, it’s a perfect time to check up on your supplies! 56% of you bring your own supply of hot drinks, as well as those all-important snacks. This hasn’t changed at all since we last asked in 2019 – apart from a new entry in hand sanitiser, which 40% of you are now bringing in regularly.

By the end of 2020, just 20% of teachers were writing remote lesson materials each week. This January, it has risen back up to 26% again, likely due to more students being off amid record-high Covid cases!

There was a drop in the percentage of teachers covering for ill staff members compared to before Christmas. Just before the holidays, 33% of you had covered for an ill staff member. So far this term, the percentage has almost halved, down to 17%. Possibly this is because the higher student absence rate has made it easier to combine classes, or because of greater availability of supply staff who were avoiding school ahead of Christmas in order to avoid isolation.

2. Is part-time working the future?

Working part-time can offer a range of opportunities, and is being pushed by the Department for Education as a way to resolve retention issues. Yet two-thirds of teachers say that working part-time in their school would be very difficult.

Slightly more primary teachers thought that working part-time would be difficult, compared to secondary teachers. The biggest difference, however, was between teachers of different seniorities. Classroom teachers were the most optimistic when it comes to working part-time, with 57% of primary teachers and 44% of secondary teachers saying that working part-time would be difficult.

On the other hand, headteachers are nearly all in agreement that working part-time is difficult – with 89% in agreement.

The prospects for part-time working hasn’t changed much in schools since the start of 2020 (pre-pandemic!). In both cases, two-thirds of you agreed that working part-time would be difficult. Hence, while other sectors have become much more flexible, it doesn’t seem like schools are changing at the same rate.

3. Ofsted Inspections

Ofsted inspectors were back inspecting schools in earnest last term. However, rising Omicron cases meant that this term they had to change their approach and pare back inspections. 89% of you wanted Ofsted to cancel inspections this term, although many of you wanted exceptions to be made for safeguarding issues (76%) or schools specifically requesting it (35%).

While most teachers wanted the cancelling of inspections, less experienced teachers were more willing to grant exceptions for school requests and more experienced teachers wanted to mostly cancel them all for a while.

Finally… we know you love the daily read, so here are the ones from last week

The most read tip from the past week was: How can we squeeze more learning out of a lesson?

And here are the rest for your reference:

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