‘Beyond the call of duty’: lecturers top unpaid overtime figures

Teachers and lecturers are more likely to work unpaid overtime than workers in any other occupation, according to union figures.

February 24, 2012

The data, released by the Trades Union Congress, show that 55.6 per cent of teaching and education professionals work unpaid overtime. On average, they put in an extra 9.6 hours a week.

Across all working groups, 21 per cent do unpaid overtime and work an extra 7.2 hours a week on average.

Second in the list behind teaching and educational professionals are directors and managers in the financial sector (52.7 per cent).

Sally Hunt, general secretary of the University and College Union, said:

“Today’s figures confirm that our teachers and lecturers continue to go above and beyond the call of duty for their pupils and students. The government cannot keep expecting more for less from such dedicated people, particularly when their reward is real-terms pay cuts and attacks on their pensions.”

A spokesman for the Universities and Colleges Employers Association said that the figures masked a more complex picture.

“Academic staff in higher education institutions are valued and committed professionals with contracts that reflect this,” he said. “Their roles require flexible and largely unsupervised working over a year with variable teaching-intensity levels, and there is a high degree of choice in how these professionals organise their time.

“Institutions tell us that their academic professionals regard this personal flexibility as one of the most valued features of working in the sector.”

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