Planning time set to become a reality for teachers

From today, every school teacher in England will be legally entitled to 10% of their timetable for the planning, preparation and assessment of lessons for the first time.

The new Planning, Preparation and Assessment time (PPA) is the third phase of changes to the way teachers work to make sure they can spend as much of their time as possible teaching and raising standards. The government described the move as “a historic change to teachers’ working conditions”.

However, the change has caused controversy after research showed that up to 1,700 teachers will lose their jobs next term as schools in England and Wales make cuts to comply with new government legislation.

A survey of 500 primary schools by the National Association of Head Teachers showed that more than one in 12 schools is being forced to sack staff.

The PPA regulations follow the implementation of changes which mean teaching cover is limited to a maximum of 38 hours per year and that no teacher has to perform administrative tasks.

Schools minister, Jacqui Smith, said there was sufficient money in the system and support for schools to make the system work.

She said that 23,000 schools were “ready willing and able” to deliver PPA to their teachers when term begins.

“PPA time is about raising standards even further,” she said. “It will give teachers dedicated time, within the current timetable, to plan and prepare for their lessons and help to personalise the education that our young people receive.”

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