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18 November 2005

Factsheet 2 : Distribution of time across different school-related activities

Press Release
  • Educators spend on average 41% of total time on work related to teaching, 14% on planning and preparation, 14% on assessment, evaluation, reports and record-keeping and 12% on extra-curricular activities. Least amount of time is taken up in guidance and counselling, breaks and pastoral care.
  • There is a steady decrease of time spent during and outside formal school hours as the week proceeds, starting at an average of 10 hrs on Monday and ending with just over 8 hrs on Friday.
  • There were statistically significant differences in average time spent teaching but not on preparation and planning between educators in rural, semi-rural and urban areas. Educators in urban areas spend the highest average of 17.57 hrs on teaching and 5.9 hrs on preparation and planning compared to educators in rural areas who reported a total average of 15.95 hrs and 5.47 hrs respectively.
  • Primary school teachers spend more time teaching (about 17.01 hrs) than those in secondary and combined schools, while those in combined schools spend more time (about 6.49 hrs) in preparation and planning compared to their counterparts in primary and secondary schools.
  • Educators in former white schools spend the highest average time of 19.11 hrs on teaching per week (half the total time spent on their activities) while the new schools established after 1994 spent the last time at 14.22 hrs. Educators in former African schools (DET) spend 15.18 hrs teaching. Educators in former Indian schools reported the highest average time of 7.30 hrs spent in preparation and planning while the new schools registered the least time.
  • Females reported the highest average time of 18.06 hrs spent in teaching and 5.79 hrs in preparation and planning. Male teachers seem to spend less time teaching during the formal school hrs and more time in preparation and planning during formal school hrs.
  • Educators in the Foundation Phase reported the highest average time in both teaching (18.83 hrs) and in preparation and planning (5.86 hrs). Educators in the Senior Phase (Grades 7-9) spend the least time on average in teaching (15.4 hrs) and in preparation and planning (5.56 hrs). This runs counter to policy that stipulates more time for teachers in the higher phases.
  • Educators in small schools (less than 100 learners) spend relatively more time (about 20.48 hrs) than others in teaching. Those in a school of medium size (between 201 and 400) spend the least time (16.48 hrs). However, these same educators in schools with 201-400 learners spend the highest average time in preparation and planning, while in schools with 401-800 learners spend the least (about 5.57 hrs).
  • The highest average time of 17.93 hrs spent in teaching was reported for Mathematics and Numeracy and least of 10.19 hrs for Life Orientation. Educators teaching Social Sciences reported the highest average time of 6.32 hrs spent on preparation and planning while Life Orientation recorded the least time of 4.16 hrs. Language and Literacy did not feature anywhere in terms of the learning areas that take a lot of educators’ time in teaching and in preparation and planning.

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