Teachers: do you feel “undervalued, unsupported and unrecognised”?

25 Jun

The Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) (a large-scale international comparison study, run by the OECD, “designed to increase the international information available to participating countries on teachers, teaching and the impact that teachers can have on student learning”) has published its 2013 results, from more than 100,000 secondary teachers across 34 countries, which include England for the first time.

Its findings include:
  • 69% of respondents (65% in England) said they did not think that teaching was “valued in society”.
  • A third of teachers said they observed their colleagues in the classroom, with over half never or rarely take part in team-teaching with colleagues. Those teachers who worked more closely with colleagues reported higher levels of job satisfaction.
  • The vast majority of teachers in England reported receiving appraisals from at least one senior colleague, but many expressed concerns about the usefulness of the exercise. 51%  described the process as “largely done to fulfill administrative requirements”, while just 43% were of the view that consistently underperforming colleagues were “likely to be dismissed”.  Michael Davidson, the OECD’s head of early childhood and schools, said: “Teachers in England get… more feedback than [in] just about any other country, [but] the question is, is that feedback making a difference?  The evidence [suggests] it isn’t making as much of a difference as it is on some other countries… It isn’t affecting what they do in the classroom, it isn’t having any positive effect on their self-confidence.”
  • In Poland, 8% of lessons were lost to poor behaviour and 20% in Brazil. In England, teachers spent 11% of lesson time on poor behaviour.
  • Apart from Singapore, England has the youngest teaching force of any of the education systems in the survey. It has fewer head teachers over the age of 60 than any other developed country.
Do let us know your thoughts and experiences…

Tag: Professionalism

Tag: Teaching

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One Response to “Teachers: do you feel “undervalued, unsupported and unrecognised”?”

  1. Alison Taylor 25. Jun, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    ‘Undervalued, unsupported and unrecognised’ could probably be said by many employees in many modern workplaces all over the world. Teachers are no different to many others. The pressures of a modern work place have increased the need for accountability and performance. This is particularly evident when working for the public sector as we need to show value for money and a need for the service. This means that self evaluation and collegiate work to improve the service is required. Identifying areas for improvement should be taken as feedback not criticism. Easier said than done, I know, but we need to embrace this evaluation so we can all seek excellence.

    I love my jobs as a teacher. I work across many schools so it could be very easy to feel negative and look for someone to assure me that I am ‘valued, supported and recognised’. However I have a professional duty to evaluate my performance and to work with my team and management to seek to improve.
    I know how important it is to be the best teacher that I can be and to seek improvement and change to have the best impact on my pupils.

    I say, let’s celebrate that we are so lucky to be in this privileged profession. Life in the 21st Century throws employees many challenges but also so many rewards.

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