Directed Time

James Williams

What is directed time?
Directed time is when teachers are directed by their head teacher to be at work and available for work. This is a maximum of 1,265 hours per academic year, spread over 190 days of teaching and five more non-teaching days. The 1,265 hours is a maximum – schools should allow a contingency to cover unexpected events. Teachers do have to work reasonable additional hours as necessary for preparation and assessment – but these hours cannot be directed by the head teacher. The statutory limit on directed time (1,265 hours) applies to teachers working under the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD).
What must be included?
The following must be part of directed time: teaching time, PPA time, supervision before and after sessions and at breaks (but not lunchtimes, when teachers can’t be required to do this), cover, parents evenings, after school meetings, INSET/CPD and anything else which teachers are “directed” to do and which requires their professional skills. The full list is in sections 51 & 52 of the STPCD. Directed time and the 1,265 max should be adjusted pro-rata for those working part-time.
Working days:
51.2. A teacher employed full-time must be available for work for 195 days (194 days for the school year beginning in 2022) days, of which:
a) 190 days (189 days for the school year beginning in 2022) must be days on which the teacher may be required to teach pupils and perform other duties; and
b) 5 days must be days on which the teacher may only be required to perform other duties; and
those 195 days (194 days for the school year beginning in 2022) must be specified by the employer or, if the employer so directs, by the headteacher.

51.3. Paragraph 51.2 does not apply to a teacher employed full-time wholly or mainly to teach or perform other duties in relation to pupils in a residential establishment.
PPA Time:
52.5. All teachers who participate in the teaching of pupils are entitled to reasonable periods of Planning, Preparation and Assessment (PPA) time as part of the 1265 hours (1258.5 hours for the school year beginning in 2022), referred to in paragraph 51.5 or pro rata equivalent (as the case may be) to enable the discharge of the professional responsibilities of teaching and assessment. PPA time must be provided in units of not less than half an hour during the school’s timetabled teaching week and must amount to not less than 10% of the teacher’ timetabled teaching time. A teacher must not be required to carry out any other duties during the teacher’s PPA time.
Link to the NEU guidance –
Link to NASUWT guidance –

James Williams – Solicitor

James Williams

I am a qualified Employment Law and HR Solicitor. I specialise in acting for schools and advise on all aspects of employment law and HR including attending employee meetings, advising senior leaders, conducting redundancy consultations, drafting contracts of employment, advising on policies and procedures and negotiating settlement agreements.