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School Workforce Development Team Headteachers' Conference "Taking Care of Your Staff" 16th October 2007. What do we know? What are we finding out?. Teaching is one of the most stressful professions

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School Workforce

Development Team

Headteachers' Conference

"Taking Care of Your Staff"

16th October 2007

what do we know what are we finding out
What do we know?What are we finding out?
  • Teaching is one of the most stressful professions
  • That the issues and pressures faced by teachers and other staff in schools are regarded as largely work-based
  • That workload issues affect teachers in specific ways
  • That relationships and conflict are a major source of stress and anxiety in schools
  • That stress and well being can be addressed at organisational level
  • That it costs more to ‘fire fight’ stress and ill-health at work than to do something proactively about it.
it has been calculated that
It has been calculated that:
  • it costs 10% of their annual salary to induct a new member of staff at whatever level.
  • Sickness absence in schools costs at least £370 million a year (excluding cover and management costs)
  • The average bill for a secondary school of 80 teachers could be as high as £96,000 p.a.
disenchantment with the workplace can lead to
Disenchantment with the workplace can lead to:
  • Employee cynicism
  • Morale problems
  • Resistance to change
  • Staff disengaging and not giving of their best
  • People looking for other jobs or considering self-employment
wellbeing interventions
Wellbeing Interventions
  • With your neighbours, can you look at which of the following levels of intervention you have in place for your staff and for yourself. Are there things that you would like to tackle?
  • Have others in your group got good examples of this that we can share?
  • Where does staff wellbeing sit with current agendas?
All employers have a legal duty to assess the risk of stress-related ill-health and to take measures to reduce that risk.

The National Well-Being Programme from Worklife Support has been developed specifically for schools and is broadly equivalent to the HSE's Stress Management Standards approach.

Participation in the National Well-Being Programme will enable schools to demonstrate they have met their duty under Health and Safety legislation.

Source: Health & Safety Executive, February 2006

the national well being programme
The National Well-Being Programme
  • Social enterprise organisation and sister company to the Teacher Support Network, formerly the Teachers’ Benevolent Fund
  • We are currently working in over 80 Local Authorities across the country, providing training and development work to schools and local authorities.
  • To date, over 110,000 staff in more than 2,200 institutions have taken part in the Well-Being Programme
proven success factors for managing change
Proven success factors for managing change
  • Stepwise and systematic process
  • Effective problem analysis
  • Combination of measures focusing both on work environment and employees
  • Worker participation
  • Commitment from the top

Source: KOMPIER, M.A.J. et al (1998)

Cases in Stress Prevention: the success of a participative and stepwise approach

The Well-Being Programme provides a structure for managing change, while ensuring that employers have fulfilled their Duty of Care.
5 the online survey contains 6 sections based on the 6 hse management standards
5) The online surveyContains 6 sections based on the 6 HSE Management Standards:
  • Demands
  • Control
  • Support
  • Relationships

HSE Management Standards

  • Change
  • Role

Contains 3 additional sections to provide extra information:

  • Development priorities
  • Culture
  • Personal wellbeing & worklife balance
well being programme

Well-Being helps you to achieve your aims


People strategies: IiP, CPD, PM, and HSE Management Standards

Ofsted & School Self-Evaluation

National Healthy School Standard

Pupil-behaviour strategies

School standards and improvement

Workforce Remodelling, Extended Schools, and Every Child Matters

calculations from one london authority
Calculations from one London authority

Well-Being schools Non-Well-Being schools

33% fall in sickness absence in primary schools, saving an average of £2,981

36% fall in sickness absence in secondary schools, saving an average of £11,025

50% reduction in staff turnover compared to non-Well-Being schools

15% rise in sickness absence in primary schools

5% fall in sickness absence in secondary schools

impact of well being programme on stress related absence among norfolk teachers
Impact of Well-Being Programme on stress-related absence among Norfolk teachers

The number of teachers taking time off due to stress in Norfolk fell by around 40% between the summer terms of 2003 and 2004 and a further 40% between the summer terms of 2004 and 2005.

Norfolk County Council, as reported in Norwich Evening News, 3 January 2006, p11


Benefits of the Well-Being Programme (national data)

Percentage of headteachers surveyed who could see improvements in 7 key areas after completing the Well-Being Programme:

The Hertfordshire



outcomes from hertfordshire programme
Outcomes from Hertfordshire Programme

Key Strengths

  • Job satisfaction
  • Motivation, loyalty, team spirit
  • Clarity of roles
  • Support systems, both formal and informal

Key Concerns

  • Workload and managing pressure
  • Change Management
  • Communication between specific role groups
comments from headteachers
Comments from Headteachers
  • “This is my opportunity to show the staff how much I care for them and value them. Their well being is very important to me.”
  • “Well-Being has given everyone a chance to have their say in a confidential way.”
  • “Now everyone has ownership of our issues for development and therefore has a shared responsibility for resolving them.”


comments continued
Comments Continued….
  • “I no longer have to do all the thinking

and problem solving.”

  • “Doing nothing about staff well being is

an expensive option.”

costs for all schools 2007 08
Costs for All Schools 2007/08
  • One Off Registration Fee of £100 per school
  • £10 per member of staff on payroll per survey

3 Year Programme

  • Average Primary School (40 staff) = £900
  • Average Secondary School (100 Staff) = £2100
what you get for your money
What You Get For Your Money
  • A Headteacher Induction Pack
  • Half day induction training for 2 or 3 facilitators
  • Access to two on-line surveys
  • Two half day Development Meetings to review and compare outcomes of surveys
  • On-going support from County Co-ordinator
  • On-line resources from Worklife Support
  • Two optional twilight networking meetings
why join the well being programme
Why Join the Well Being Programme
  • It ensures that heads and governors have complied with their duty of care in line with HSE’s management standards.
  • It is a proven and trusted self evaluation tool that enables schools to collect and analyse data as well as receive training and support as part of the process.
  • It builds teamwork and encourages both a shared and a personal responsibility to reduce work related stress and improve work/life balance.
  • A process – not an initiative
  • Not a “quick-fix”
  • Doesn’t provide the answers!
  • Not a “top-down” model of change management
  • No artificially defined time-frame
  • Well-Being starts with the individual

‘What’s the smallest thing I can do

to make the biggest difference?’

"I would wholeheartedly recommend the Well-Being Programme. At a time of unprecedented educational change, it has served as a timely reminder of the importance of investing in the wellbeing of the staff - who represent our most valuable resource. In particular, the Well-Being survey provides schools with very clear feedback about strengths and areas for development in this crucial aspect of school life."

Andy Yarrow, Headteacher, Hornsey School for Girls, September 2005