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Break Entitlements At Work


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i hear so many conflicting view on this, what are we entitled to in terms of breaks...


someone at work said that if you work a 9 - 6 shift your entitled to a half hour lunch break (paid).


what we get at work (we have no morning or afternoon break) is an hour lunch however unpaid....


what is it like in your setting.


I know at my last nursery i had a 30 minute paid lunch break,and at my nursery before that we had a thirty minute unpaid lunch but we had two 15 mins breaks (paid) in the day.


how does it work in your settings.


I work in a private nursery if that makes a difference?



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I rang Acas about this the other day. For every 6 hours you work you are entitled to a 20 minute break. This rule is different for a youngerage group, might be under 18's but they are intitled to 30 minutes for every 4 hours they work, but you would need to check the age.


At our nursery we work 9 hour days including an hour lunch which is paid as we may need to stay on the premises to maintain the nursery ratio's.


The ACAS number is 0845 7474747 (i think) if you need to speak to them. I ring them so often we are nearly on a first name basis :o


I also work in a private day nursery

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also forgot to say that the break has to be within the 6 hours, so you couldn't work 8 - 2 and then have a 20 minute break.

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Here is the Acas site link




Here is a quote from the site;


Rest breaks


An adult worker is entitled to a rest break where the working day is more than six hours. The details of the rest break are to be set out in any collective or workforce agreement which applies. If no such agreement applies the rest break should be an uninterrupted period of not less than 20 minutes which the worker is entitled to spend away from the work station.



However, it doesn't clearly say whether it should be paid or not, just that you are entitled to the break, so maybe you need to ring the number rapunzel gave you, to clarify this.


I personaly think it is very important for my staff to have a break AWAY from the children ( for the childrens sake :o ). They used to say they were happy to sit and eat their lunch with the children, but I insist they take a break in another room, or out for fresh air. They now realise they feel much better for this.



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Some staff at my setting work 4.5 hours and contract state we are entittled to a break of 15 minutes - in the three years that I have worked there we have never been able to take it because of staff ratios - how do you mangage this?



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We are a committee run pre-school, we have had many discussions on this.

I come in at 8am unpaid to set up with another member of staff, pay starts at 9am. we are then paid for 3 and a hlaf hours, children leave at the end of the session, we run around setting up for next session, this takes about 30 minutes, that leaves us 10 minutes to eat a quick sandwich before we open again for the afternoon sessions. We are then paid till 3pm, most staff go home but me and the other member of staff stay till 4pm to put it all away. We only get 10 minutes, this is not long enough and something we are trying to get across to the committee, they will not allow another member of staff to come in to cover lunchs because of costs but we cant leave the sessions because of ratios. we are still debating!!!!!!!

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I work in a private day nursery and usually do an 8-6 or a 9-6 day.

I'm entitled to a 10 minute morning break and a 10 minute afternoon break (paid) - but i don't always get a chance to take them and an hour lunch break (unpaid).


I think it varies everywhere you go though as i've had no breaks, short lunches, paid lunches, and so on :o



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