Last reviewed on 19 March 2019
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 4491

Read the rules on setting and changing the school day for maintained schools and academies. Get advice on how to consult on the changes, and see examples of other schools' consultations.

Whose responsibility is it? 

In maintained schools, the governing board is responsible for setting the length of the school day. You can set the school day as you see fit, as long as every school day has two sessions divided by a break. This is set out in Department for Education guidance on school attendance (page 15). 

Academies should check their funding agreements to see who is responsible, and whether there are any restrictions.

There's no formal process

There's no specific process you need to follow if you want to alter your school day. You don't need to notify the DfE or hold a formal consultation. The DfE confirmed this to us.

The headteacher draws up plans to change the school day The headteacher presents the plans to governors, who discuss and scrutinise them  The school consults with parents and other stakeholders The headteacher or other senior leader analyses the responses, and presents them to the governing board The board considers