UK: Workload driving teachers out of profession – union survey

published 11 December 2017 updated 13 December 2017

Workload is the biggest barrier to young teachers making the profession their career, UK young teachers have highlighted.

Young teachers aged 30 and under gathered in Birmingham, United Kingdom, on 2 December for the Young Teachers’ Consultation Conference where they participated in professional development workshops and received support and advice. The conference was organised by the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT).

A real-time electronic poll of the conference participants found that:

·         More than four in ten (43 per cent) teachers said that workload gets in the way of teaching being considered a career for life

·         One in ten teachers (12 per cent) said they will leave teaching within one year

·         Less than a quarter (21 per cent) said they would recommend teaching as a career to family or friends

Committed but not confident

“It was clear that the young teachers at the conference are absolutely and fully committed to being great teachers and to serving the children and young people they teach,” NASUWT General Secretary Chris Keates said.

However, “many do not feel confident of being able to remain in teaching in the longer term and would not recommend a career in teaching to others”, she said. “Spiralling workloads, unsustainable working hours, and worsening pay and conditions of service are the main factors impacting on young teachers’ morale and job satisfaction.”

The deepening recruitment and retention crisis gripping schools will not be solved unless the Government acts on the concerns of young teachers, Keates added.