How much does your school spend on marking?

I have yet to meet a single head or senior teacher who can answer this off the top of their heads, but it is easy to work out using government-published figures.
  1. Teachers work 55.7 hours/week total1, and spend 9.4 hours/week marking2. That’s 17%.
  2. The average teacher salary is £28,9513, but we have to add the employer’s NI contribution of 13.8% to give an employer cost of £32,946, ignoring all overheads.
  3. 17% of £32,946 of is £5,601. That’s what we spend on marking per teacher, per year.
  4. The average secondary school employs 654 qualified teachers, so the total cost per school is £364,053.
I’ll repeat that. The average state secondary school spends well over a third of a million pounds a year on marking.
  • Is it worth that much?
  • Could it be done more cheaply?
  • What would be a better use of those resources?


  1. Classroom teachers in local authority secondary schools, from the Teachers’ Workloads Diary Survey.
  2. as above.
  3., Secondary School Teacher Salary.
  4. As of Jan 2012 there were 3,268 state-funded mainstream secondary schools in England. There are 3,184,728 secondary pupils and a pupil:teacher ratio of 15:1.  3,184,728/3,268/15=65. It may be more useful to you to quote the number of teachers in your own school, and multiply that by £5,601.


4 responses to “How much does your school spend on marking?”

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