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Case Studies

Case Studies



Teacher - Reduction in working days for work life balance



Teacher - Reduction in working days to accommodate secondary employment



Curriculum Lead - work life balance



Developing staff well-being



Curriculum Lead – focus on family time



Compressed Hours



Flexible working hours


Senior Leader – Balancing School, Family and Inspection


Senior Leader – School Timetabler and Timetable Consultant


Design and Technology Teacher – Finding space to be creative


RE Teacher – Supporting her family


Teacher – Reduction in working days for work life balance

Employee Feedback

I currently work 3 full days a week and have done so since October 2017, when I returned from maternity leave. School were very supportive of this change and understood my reasons to request this.

Working three days means I can teach to my full potential, give more back to school, and enjoy my job! I am able to have a really good balance with work and family time. I can take my son to nursery and pick him up, which is so important to him and means I can show him how important his education is to me.

I am always invited along to PD days and other training sessions, whether it is on my usual working days or not. Our leadership team support me if I want to attend these sessions and can swap my working days if needed.

Headteacher Feedback

Ruth is an experienced teacher who teaches in Key Stage 2 and leads Design Technology and our Rainbows and Mini-Vinnies groups. After the birth of her first child she asked if she could reduce her hours to three days a week. A job share with a newly qualified teacher this year has been particularly successful as we have been able to build in some additional intervention time for the class and lots of support for the new teacher including the opportunity to observe or work alongside. It has also meant Ruth has been able to be released to deliver Rainbows sessions for pupils who have suffered loss.

Teacher – Reduction in working days to accommodate secondary employment

Employee Feedback

After delivering Mindfulness sessions within my school setting to pupils throughout KS1 and KS2 and seeing the benefits, I started to look into how more children could be reached.
Our school is among a small minority, were staff are released to concentrate solely on this practice, therefore some children in other schools, may never get the chance to experience Mindfulness, gaining valuable life skills.

With this in mind, I began to look at rooms to rent and I was lucky enough to be offered a room in a local hub and started to run after school sessions to children throughout the town.
This proved very popular, but I found myself in a bit of a catch 22 situation. I now had an amazing room which children and parents loved but because I was working full time, I was only utilising this space for a maximum of 2 hours a day, limiting the amount of children I could reach.

I then decided, in order to make the most of the space I had, that I would offer a similar service to mothers and toddlers, meaning I could use my space on afternoons.
I discussed this with my Headteacher, she was extremely supportive and agreed that I could drop 3 of my afternoons.

This flexibility enables me to follow my passion, whilst still carrying out the job I love, supporting children who find school difficult and for this I am most grateful.

Headteacher Feedback

Jo has worked as a teaching assistant for over 12 years as part of our team. She was given the opportunity to train as a mindfulness practitioner for children and she was able to work as a higher level teaching assistant delivering whole class mindfulness sessions and group sessions to identified pupils. She regularly supports and advises the whole staff team on wellbeing activities.

As her own business as a mindfulness consultant has developed, she requested to reduce some afternoons in school in order to deliver sessions in a community hub. We were happy to support her career development while retaining her skills in our school every morning.

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Curriculum Lead – work life balance

Employee Feedback

Having had two children in a short space of time, I was very much aware that my work/family life balance needed to be addressed. Thankfully, the school were very understanding and looked at my request seriously offering me an opportunity to continue my career while also allowing me time to spend with my young children. My working pattern allows me to continue to lead my curriculum area and develop the offer we can give to the children in addition to my duties as a classroom teacher. I am fully supported and valued and feel fortunate to be part of an organisation that provides opportunities to develop my career while promoting a health work/life balance.

Headteacher Feedback

Vicky is an experienced member of the teaching team at St Patrick’s who makes a significant contribution to school life. When Vicky made an application for part time working, we were able to accommodate her request ensuring she continued to serve the pupils and community to the best of her ability while allowing her time to dedicate to her family. We identified that excellent communication with colleagues is key to ensuring continuity in provision and this has been achieved. The flexible working pattern has resulted in a motivated, happy team member continuing to deliver excellence to the community.

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Developing staff well-being

Employee Feedback

As a group of staff we have been involved in developing our school’s wellbeing charter; we’ve worked alongside our Headteacher and Deputy to develop the charter. All teachers have the opportunity to work from home for their PPA each week for a full afternoon, should they wish. Additionally, all teachers also have a dedicated 45 mins of subject leadership time each week, whilst the SLT undertake the whole school celebration assembly. Finding time during the working week for headspace is vitally important to us all, and we find it extremely worthwhile. Morale is high, and we are a happy staff.

Headteacher Feedback

Developing the wellbeing charter to promote a culture of wellbeing in our school, has been an important aspect of my servant leader Headship. In our school we all benefit from the positive working environment where staff are happy, feel valued, and are willing to share their talents. Teacher turnover is low, however when we do advertise and applicants visit, they describe a positive feeling; an atmosphere and an attitude, that is welcoming and exciting.

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Curriculum Lead – focus on family time

Employee Feedback

After the birth of my second child, spending time with my family was critical to me, however, I very much value my career and my role as a Curriculum Leader teaching sixth form student. The opportunity of a role in another school working part time became available and although I didn’t want to leave the school and the students I love. I knew an opportunity like this wouldn’t come again soon and so I spoke to my Headteacher and made a flexible working request, this was a few years ago and I have been able to continue teaching the sixth form students whilst spending time with my young family. I couldn’t be happier.

Headteacher Feedback

Jane is an outstanding teacher, and Curriculum Leader, teaching a specialist subject at A Level with fantastic feedback from the students. Recruitment to our sixth form is very often linked to her subject area and as soon as Jane made her Flexible Working Request, I wanted to ensure we worked hard to find a solution. As the only specialist in school teaching her subject, timetabling is a challenge and there are compromises, but this is certainly a solution that suits us all. Jane continues to achieve excellent outcomes for students and contributes fully to the whole school community.

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Compressed Hours

Employee Feedback

After having my first child I wanted to establish the benefit of spending more time with my child whilst remaining a full commitment to my role as Finance Director. The flexibility of working a compressed working week ensures that I complete everything expected of me but gives a balance to being with my child. I have and will continue to have a flexible approach to the needs of the school.

Headteacher Feedback

The flexible working arrangement has been of enormous benefit to the school. Following maternity leave, our school business manager condensed her hours into 4 working days per week. This has enabled us to retain an excellent team leader who knows the school so well whilst enabling her to balance her work with her life as a new mother. It is a win-win situation.

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Flexible working hours

Employee Feedback

I have enjoyed a long and fulfilling career in education achieving many things, most notably being appointed CEO of the then Carmel Education Trust, now Bishop Hogarth Catholic Education Trust. A few years ago I took the unprecedented step, as CEO, of applying for flexible working; I wanted to step back slightly from my career and have time to enjoy my home life. I was supported by the Chair of Directors who naturally felt it imperative the Trust continued to benefit from stable, consistent leadership and that our focus remained outward facing. Although I now work full time at the moment because of the pandemic, I was hugely grateful for the opportunity to have flexibility in that period.

Headteacher Feedback

As Chair of Directors. I knew it was critical that our Trust continued to benefit from the commitment of its experienced CEO. Directors knew that by agreeing to this flexible working request we were not only retaining a vital member of staff, we were also ensuring that our Trust maintained its presence with national, regional and local bodies. By revising our leadership structure we were able to continue to develop and meet the needs of our Trust whilst supporting our CEO. During the pandemic our CEO has returned to a full time operational role.

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Senior Leader – Balancing School, Family and Inspection

Employee Feedback

After starting my family I successfully reduced my contract as an Advanced Skills Teacher and Senior Leader to 0.8. my school had previous experience of being flexible with my timetable to enable my one to two days weekly outreach work. Following the birth of my third child, which coincided with becoming a trained Ofsted Inspector it became even more important to me to balance my professional commitments with family life.  School supported me in working 3 days per week, as well as enabling me to fulfil the training and inspection commitments for Ofsted. Being granted the opportunity to work flexibly has enabled me to continue to do my senior role effectively whilst affording me a good work life balance and continued professional development opportunities.

Headteacher Feedback

Sarah is an outstanding practitioner and valued member of our leadership team.  She has a wealth of teaching and learning experience and we were keen to support her in balancing the demands of a leadership role with her family life.  Sarah’s experience as an OFSTED inspector is invaluable to our leadership team and her advice is key in developing our school teaching and learning priorities.

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Senior Leader – School Timetabler and Timetable Consultant

Employee Feedback

As school timetabler and a mother of three, I have always been passionate about the importance of supporting flexible working requests.  Our school’s can-do attitude to timetabling means that we focus on the positive aspects of flexible working rather than seeing them as a barrier to effective timetabling.  With the support of my school I am now in the unique position of being able to accommodate my own part time working request.  Working two days in school has allowed me to take on an additional role as a Timetable Consultant, supporting other schools in facilitating flexible working.

Headteacher Feedback

Claire is an experienced timetabler with extensive knowledge of a number of timetabling packages. She is skilled in considering creative ways to timetable flexible working whilst minimising the impact on overall timetable quality.  We were happy to support her flexible working request to ensure she can dedicate sufficient time to her family whilst still being a valued member of our leadership team. Her role as a timetable consultant enables her to draw on her experiences working with other schools when creating our own school timetable.

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Design and Technology Teacher – Finding space to be creative

Employee Feedback

I have been teaching for 12 years and since 2017 I have worked a 0.8 timetable. As a Design Technology teacher I am conscientious and have very high standards of myself and strive to keep my teaching current. I teach both GCSE and A-level Design Technology and much of this involves supporting students with their own creativity and design. My degree in industrial design has given me a great base of knowledge to support our students, however since moving from industry into teaching I felt that the workload of a full timetable meant I was struggling to find the time to be creative outside the classroom and keep up with new innovations in the world of design. The reduction in my timetable to 4 days has allowed me the time to pursue and develop my own interests within my subject area enabling me to bring my skills and inspiration back into the

classroom. I have completed an upholstery course and have been doing my own design pieces which has reignited my passion for my subject and improved the experience I can give our students. In addition to the time it has given me for my own creativity, going part time has also given me more time to contribute to the school’s design work. I have designed drama and music programmes, posters, certificates, postcards, bookmarks and most recently templates for social media.

Headteacher Feedback

Lindsey is an excellent classroom practitioner whose creative skills are second to none. She has always been committed to supporting her students in achieving their best and regularly gives up her time for them outside of lessons.  However, Lindsey’s commitment to school was not allowing her sufficient time to express her own creativity and we were happy to grant her 0.8 flexible working request to help her achieve an improved work life balance.

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RE Teacher – Supporting her family

Employee Feedback

I enjoy working at my school but live some distance from the school and when my daughters started school themselves, I was concerned that I would never have the opportunity to pick them up at the end of the day. Thankfully our timetabler was able to ensure my PPA falls on last period at least one day a week which enables me to leave early and make it to the school gate in time. My girls love that I am able to pick them up once a week and it’s lovely to meet other parents and feel part of the community.

Headteacher Feedback

Sarah is a strong classroom practitioner and valued member of the RE Department. She enjoys working at our school but her long commute meant that she would never have been in a position to collect her children from school. Ensuring Sarah’s PPA falls on the last period at least one day a week is a relatively simple timetabling request which we were happy to fulfil to impact positively on her family life.

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