Why do teachers leave the classroom?
It is a well know fact, that the teacher attrition rate in England is an area for concern. While the overall number of teachers has kept pace with increasing pupil numbers to date (20% for the past 20 years), it has been argued that there are growing signs of shortages, particularly in certain geographic areas and in certain subjects.
In June 2017, the House of Commons provided information on the recruitment and retention of teachers in England, including Government initiatives to increase teacher supply.
The report found that “there is no single observable factor that can explain why teachers and leaders move to a different school, or why they leave the profession altogether, but that there are some factors that are better at predicting such moves than others.”
You can read the full report here.
Before you do, take a look at the list below and see if you can add another reason ‘why teachers are leaving the profession’.
Reasons For Leaving:
- Long hours
- Low pay
- Reducing budgets, pensions.
- Workload, planning, marking, data
- Excessive detail required by school leaders
- Too many meetings
- Target setting teaching, reporting
- Curriculum and assessment reform, new initiatives
- Lack of PPA time; arranging extra curricular events
- Performance management, appraisal, difficulty to progress up the pay spine
- Moderation of marking and continual cross-referencing
- Completing homework, behaviour logs
- Communications with parents
- Duties and managing detentions
- Writing policies
- Lack of training
- Poor behaviour – although surprisingly low at 5%.
Here is the research data on page 18.
Of course, there are thousands of reasons why teachers leave the classroom, that isn’t reported.
- Lack of research used in school e.g still grading lessons/teachers
- Mental health, lack of support, family reasons
- OfSTED methodology
- Current English Baccalaureate policy
- Forced MAT takeover
- Redundancy or retirement
- Changes to terms and conditions
- Safeguarding concerns / Capability
- The lure to work overseas or in the U.K. independent sector.
What’s missing above? If you have left the classroom, add your reason ‘why’ to the comments section below.
There are over 5,000 research articles on teacher attrition in England; access them here.