The number of teachers in Scotland who say they are stressed frequently because of workload issues has risen to more than 75%, a survey reveals.
The findings from the Educational Institute of Scotland questioned 12,000 staff and found that 60% of teachers said they were stressed regularly because of their workload.
However, a further 16.5% of teaching staff in Scotland said they are stressed ‘all of the time’.
The survey was carried out as part of the union’s ‘Value Education, Value Teachers’ campaign in a bid to boost teacher pay.
Now the union says the survey has revealed some shocking results, including the fact that 70% of respondents say they would not recommend entering teaching as a career choice.
‘Issues that affect teachers’
The union’s general secretary, Larry Flanagan, is said: “Our aim was to gather information on issues that affect teachers and to provide evidence to support our ongoing campaign.
“The discontent over pay levels feature strongly, as do concerns over excessive workload and the impact on health and well-being.”
He added: “The fact there are more than 75% of teachers who are frequently stressed at work is worrying for Scottish education, teachers and pupils.”
Now the union says there’s a recruitment crisis in Scotland because of the ‘toxic combination’ of declining pay and soaring workload.
Mr Flanagan explained the high levels of stress and excessive workload are contributing to the high level of dissatisfaction being expressed by many teaching staff.
‘Taken action to help reduce workload’
A spokesman for the Scottish government said: “We’ve taken action to help reduce workload and have acted to simplify and clarify the curriculum framework and remove unnecessary bureaucracy.”
He added that the government is looking to create new opportunities that will help a teacher to develop their career.
In addition, he said, local authorities in Scotland and the government have made an improved pay offer which would see a teacher enjoying a minimum 8% pay increase and another 3% in the proposed deal’s third year.
Liz Smith, the Scottish Conservative shadow education secretary, said: “This level of teacher stress is shocking.”
She added that it highlights a crisis in the country’s classrooms and that the workload pressures are being compounded by a lack of having a full teaching staff in many schools.
Ms Smith explained: “There are reasons why many teachers are being forced out of the profession and schools are relying on supply teachers.”