Study Leave for Paediatrics Trainees

This page is to ensure that Paediatric trainees are aware of the principles for study leave in Paediatric training. HEE Wessex study leave information and guidance can be found on our Study leave page and should be used in conjunction with this page.

General Training Principles

  1. Trainees are currently entitled to 30 days of study leave per year.
  2. They should expect an average of three hours (two hours bleep free) educational opportunity within their unit per week that they are at work.
  3. The internal educational opportunities count towards the 30 days per year.
  4. Current regulations are that trainees are expected to attend a minimum of 70% of the educational opportunities provided.
  5. Trainees should not routinely be expected to work the night shift before or after a study day. Units should anticipate staffing difficulties where possible and adjust rotas etc accordingly where possible. It is acknowledged that this is not always possible and therefore the ARCP panel has some flexibility regarding attendance in exceptional circumstances.
  6. Time off work for personal study is not an entitlement and any such time is entirely at the discretion of the supervisor and unit in which the trainee is posted. Any such time requires stated objectives and outcome measures agreed before that time is taken.
  7. There is no entitlement to personal study time prior to exams, any such time is entirely at the discretion of the supervisor and unit in which the trainee is posted.

Wessex Paediatric Training Principles

  1. In Wessex, trainees are expected to attend at least 70% of the Regional Monthly Tuesday study days. However, the ARCP panel has some flexibility regarding attendance in exceptional circumstances.
  2. Training such as Child protection, NLS and APLS is considered mandatory for Paediatric training and this is deducted from the 30 days. Exceptions may be made in relation to course availability at the discretion of the supervisor.
  3. Satisfactory progress will be assessed at the annual ARCP / RITA and trainees will not be signed off if minimum requirements for the year have not been met e.g. Child Protection and attendance at teaching sessions including regional programme.
  4. Training suitable for MRCPCH is provided within the ST1-3 (PREP1.1 and 1.2) programme and indeed is readily available in all the units by arrangement with the local consultants. As such attendance at external MRCPCH courses is discouraged and not considered a good use of the limited training time and budget. Exceptions to this may be made at the discretion of the educational supervisors and clinical directors in the individual units by negotiation.
  5. It is accepted that opportunities vary between units and that during the ST 1-8 programme trainees will experience this variation.
  6. Training provided in the early years of the programme is aimed at providing a sound basic training in paediatrics to ensure that trainees reach Level 1 (RCPCH competency framework) prior to starting ST4 and middle grade work.
  7. Some specialty opportunities are provided in ST2 in Southampton although trainees at ST2 provide cover and will experience all the specialty work in Southampton. This means there will often be little time to individualise ST1-3 training but this is encouraged where time and enthusiasm permits and is actively encouraged in the senior years as trainees prepare themselves for National Grid application and later for consultant posts.
  8. There is a strong Academic Fellowship programme in Southampton. Those who are considering that training route are actively encouraged and members of the University Dept of Child Health are always happy to discuss the possibilities with trainees.
  9. Those with particular training needs not being addressed within the programme or their current unit should discuss those needs with their supervisor and if necessary with the Programme Director and Regional Advisor – we are always open to ideas and will listen to and advise trainees as best we can.
  10. Wessex actively encourages senior trainees to work on their individual clinical and professional skills and talents and our history shows that trainees have undertaken a wide variety of masters programmes, fellowships abroad and time out of programme in related specialties in the UK . 
  11. Trainees may use their study leave budget to buy the MRCPCH Masterclass (£200).
  12. As a matter of professional courtesy and to help planning, those unable to attend planned training opportunities both internally and externally are expected to send their apologies in advance. The correct person to send apologies to is found in the PREP area of the website.