20 May 2014
A major new survey on teacher wellbeing, commissioned by EIS, has highlighted the severe workload pressure that teachers are increasingly being placed under and the impact on their health and wellbeing.
The survey, carried out independently by Scott Porter Research, was commissioned by EIS over concerns that increasing workload, particularly unnecessary paperwork, is damaging teachers’ health and having a negative impact on the time available for core learning and teaching in the classroom.
Commenting on some of the most significant findings in the survey report, EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, "Almost 7000 teachers made the time to take part in this survey, which represents a significant proportion of both EIS membership and the Scottish teaching profession overall.
"The survey results confirm the deep-set impact of workload pressures on teachers and lecturers, largely arising out of the changes to the curriculum, and paint a worrying picture of a profession under the cosh.
"Teaching is a noble profession but the fact that almost half of the respondents would be reluctant to recommend it as a career, speaks volumes for the mood of teachers and lecturers.”
He added, "It’s no surprise that the greatest focus of job satisfaction is the work undertaken with pupils and students because teaching is about relationships.
"It is also interesting to note the correlation between a greater sense of wellbeing and the practice of collegiate and distributive leadership approaches, although it is disappointing to note that only 50% of colleagues believe themselves to be in collegiate working environments.
"Overall the statistics provide a substantial body of evidence which should be studied by all involved in Scottish education, and which might hopefully lead to a renewed effort to tackle the issue of excessive workload.”
Almost 7,000 members took part in the exercise, producing a validity rating of 99%. The range of responses provided a good refection of EIS membership across all sectors and at all levels, allowing for detailed analysis to be undertaken. The full report is available here.
Amongst the key findings of the survey are:
Conclusions based on the survey returns include:
Overall, the survey returns indicate: