Recently, the Georgia Department of Education conducted a survey answered by over 53,000 of the state’s educators to explore why so many teachers leave the profession. The report from the survey can be read in its entirety here.
The survey posed these questions:
1.) If you had a student about to graduate from high school, how likely would you be to encourage teaching as a profession?
2) In Georgia, 47% of teachers leave the profession within five years. Rank the following statements often cited as the as the predominant reason a teacher leaves the profession.
(The second question presented eight often-cited reasons for teachers leaving education in Georgia and asked respondents to rank them with 1 being the “most predominant” and 8 being the least. The options were restricted to causes that can be influenced by state policy.)
- Levels of benefits/compensation;
- Level of preparation when entering the profession;
- Level/quality of support, resources, and professional learning;
- Level of teacher participation in decisions related to profession;
- Non-teaching school responsibilities/duties;
- Number and emphasis of mandated tests;
- School level/District level leadership;
- Teacher evaluation method.
3) Please list any additional reasons why you believe 47% of the teachers in Georgia leave the profession within five years.
What do your teachers think about the profession? While you can’t address every concern suggested in the survey at the school level, you can open a dialogue that can lead to conversations that can help you better understand what your faculty is thinking.
Professional conversation is a step towards empowering your teachers, and offers an opportunity for them to identify areas in which you can collaborate. Consider posing these or similar questions to your teachers as a pulse check and using the data you collect for even deeper conversations.
Our teachers should be proud to serve in their profession. You can help lift up your teachers through talks about the profession and by doing what you can at the school level to restore honor, dignity, and pride in being a teacher.