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Why do we bother?

It's nice to know that your profession is held in such high esteem by the general public. The BBC has a story on the TUC's unpaid overtime survey, and the comments on "lecturers and their thirteen week paid holidays each year" are making me depressed and furious by turns.


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I totally sympathise as they never appreciate that you don't get 13 weeks paid holiday per se as you're working/planning for the next term etc.

More importantly if you are a University lecturer (as opposed to FE teachers who are often called lecturers), you are doing research or chasing research funding which is the thing which actually brings money into the University.

that accusation is levelled more at teachers, as very few people understand what a lecturer does, it's not true that teachers have that much 'paid holiday' either, but i think that'\s always been the general perception.

perhaps a solutions is to properly factor preparation time into term time, and never have 'school' holidays????

That wouldn't work, because the people who are having a go at teachers are assuming that when the students aren't there, the teachers aren't working. So unless you eliminate the long school holidays and make the school day as long as the working day, I don't think this would persuade people how hard teachers are actually working.

Sadly, it's this myth that lecturers do nothing but sit around and think deep thoughts that has allowed governments to treat the university sector like shit for the last twenty-five years. It's very depressing that all these people seem to think that classes just happen, and that if you're not actually in front of a body of students, then you're not really working.

The first rule of BBC News Club is: Don't read the comments...

Mm, as an Associate Lecturer with the OU I only get paid for the months during which my course is presented (i.e. 8 months of the year). The pay is based on a notional number of hours per week, which was set AFAICT purely to meet minimum wage requirements, not based on the amount of time it actually takes to do the job properly. Most OU lecturers I know spend substantially longer on their work than the hours/week on their contract, often 2 or 3 times longer.

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