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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Roe

Improved Workload Outcomes & Staff Feeling More Influential

To all Thrive staff - thank you for contributing towards our annual staff survey on workload. This year we augmented our survey by adding in a new dimension by asking you questions about how you see your voice and influence (via the Lundy Model of Participation).

Here are the results and some ideas for Thrive-wide improvements.

The Lundy Model of Participation

Every year, we seek feedback from pupils, parents and staff about the extent to which their voice is heard in our schools. Key to gaining an understanding on this has been our adoption of the Lundy Model of Participation. Two years ago, we used Professor Laura Lundy’s model when listening to pupils so that we can see which of her four domains we need to strengthen.

Using this model has been a game-changer. Under guidance from Dr Gill Hughes & Dr Tricia Shaw of Hull University, and from Professor Lundy herself we have clarity around how well we are listening to you, and how influential you feel.

Our experience from asking pupils about their opportunity to have a voice heard, and how seriously leaders take their voice, indicates that an 88% positive ‘influence’ score is a strong result and represents a great base from which to build. Pupils returned an 86% positive result.

In terms of how influential various workforce groups feel, Teaching Assistants gave a 93% positive response, Non-Teaching Support workers 86%, and Teachers 85% - all good starting points which indicate that staff sense that their voice is being actively listened to, and actively considered.

School leaders are now tasked with reviewing the survey data and working with colleagues to formulate three key actions for the year ahead. Further listening will provide us with a crystal clear view of where the next improvement will come from.

The model we have developed with pupils has been to take these results back to them and co-produce ways forward. How can a similar process work with staff? This is the question that we are currently working on.

Workload Reduction

Last year we used the DfE’s Workload Reduction Toolkit survey questions to gauge how you view their workload. We ran the same questions again this year and so have some comparative data.

It is really pleasing to see that all workforce groups show more positive responses in 2023 compared with the previous year.

Individual school leaders will be communicating with you about school specific positives and negatives coming out of the workload reduction surveying. A key global improvement is the area of curriculum planning with big positive moves being reported from schools where staff are working with other Thrive schools to share planning and reduce workload.

Almost all of the areas for improvement showed an improved position from last year - but key priorities remain;

Teachers / HLTAs

  1. curriculum planning (+4%)

  2. marking work (-6%)

  3. general admin work (+6%)

Teaching Assistants

  1. cover for absent colleagues (+8%)

  2. pupil discipline (+6%)

  3. and pupil supervision outside of timetabled time (+1%)

Non-Teaching Support

  1. general admin work (+7%)

  2. general admin work (+0%)

  3. organising resources (+1%)

Comments about the over use of email came through strongly. This will feature in some Thrive-wide guidance in the year ahead.

Thank you again for taking part in the staff survey. You have given us some clarity around where we need to go next, and some encouragement that actions taken in recent times are resulting in positive forward movement.

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