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The Department for Education launches a workload reduction toolkit

Workload website.jpg

As part of the Department's action to support schools in reducing workload, the DfE has launched a series of online resources or 'workload toolkit' to support school leaders and teachers to help review and reduce workload in their schools. NAHT has been working closely with the team to support the development of the toolkit, whilst continuing to press the Department and others to tackle the system drivers of workload.

There is no obligation for schools to use the toolkit and schools are not specifically required to use any of the tools or examples over other approaches which have already been proven to work. However, the toolkit does provide some useful resources for school leaders to engage staff in reviewing workload, and we would encourage you to take the time to consider the resources, and current workload practices in school.

The toolkit is divided into three parts and is designed so that schools can work through each stage, although the tools can also be used as standalone materials too. All tools can be tailored and customised to fit the situation in your own school.

Section 1: Identifying the workload issues in your school(s)

This section has advice and tools to help school leaders and staff use the toolkit and identify areas of high workload that could be addressed. Tools include:

  • Staff workload survey
  • Impact graph workshop
  • Structured conversation template. 

Section 2: Guidance, training materials and practical tools to address specific areas

These resources aim to support school leaders and teachers to reduce workload throughout their school(s). The resources are grouped into themes that have been identified as issues which can lead to high workload in schools:


The resources include advice and workshops that can be used to structure an INSET day, staff meeting or training session in a school or group of schools. There are also a number of ready-made tools, as well as case studies, of schools implementing a similar approach.


Section 3: Evaluating the impact

The toolkit includes a checklist to record a quick summary of your actions and help evaluate the changes.

The Department will continue to review and refine the toolkit over the upcoming year and are keen to receive feedback on it, including:

  • how you are using the toolkit
  • how you are dealing with workload
  • whether you have other innovative and effective solutions which you would like them to consider for inclusion in the toolkit. 

Any suggestions can be sent to

As part of this work, the National College of Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) commissioned eleven school-based research reports to investigate practical and sustainable solutions for tackling teacher workload and provide evidence of the impact of successful workload reduction strategies in relation to data management, planning and marking., for more information click here

First published 01 August 2018