3Rs for the holiday period…

Relaxing image of a book, cup of coffee and festive lights


Earlier this year, YouGov’s annual UK teacher survey reported that 73% of staff consider their work-life balance is worse than they imagined it would be when they first decided to go into teaching.  Furthermore, fewer than half of respondents indicated that they would recommend the profession to young people, citing that long hours were a key factor.  So how can you support your staff to rejuvenate and restore their working capacities during the school holidays?

Encourage staff to ‘switch off’ from school

Research shows that anxiety about work during a holiday harms an individual’s ability to recover.   Leading from the front is crucial. As a senior leader, consider the example you set if you send emails during the break.  Do you only include those individuals who need to read the email? Are you only dealing with really urgent matters?

Do you have a policy on checking emails during the holidays?  Can you encourage staff to create an email rota, so everyone can take a break and not feel the need to check-in?  Is there a rota for the leadership team members, so they have time to recover too?

Staff wellbeing

Rightly, student wellbeing continues to be a focus for all schools. Sadly not a day goes by without some form of report or commentary on the issue.  However, have your wellbeing strategies extended to staff?

Our research has considered the link between teacher wellbeing and overall student performance. Where schools have more open cultures, created by student wellbeing strategies, staff are more ready to seek help.  How well do your staff know what support is available to them?

Monitoring and supporting staff wellbeing

Using our SchoolPulse® staff surveys, we regularly help schools assess staff engagement.  Employees are less likely to report work-related stress when:

  • they understand their role,
  • are satisfied that they have some say in the way they work,
  • and feel their professional development and growth is supported.

Although schools regularly monitor student wellbeing, this is not always the case for staff.  Could this be a New Year’s resolution for your school?

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