“Teachers play a critical role in shaping the lives of our nation’s children. Teachers not only facilitate learning but also influence a child’s social and emotional development.”
This is how an issue brief by Pennsylvania state university covering teachers in the USA and their occupational conditions begins. It further states that
“teaching is one of the most stressful occupations in the U.S. High levels of stress are affecting teacher health and wellbeing, causing teacher burnout, lack of engagement, job dissatisfaction, poor performance, and some of the highest turnover rates ever.”
These are findings that highlight the immediate problems relating to stress that teachers experience. Moreover, this was already before the outbreak of the pandemic.
As an additional finding, the study pointed out that stress has negative consequences for teachers. It also results in lower achievement for students and higher costs for schools.
“A New York City study showed that higher teacher turnover led to lower fourth and fifth-grade student achievement in math and language arts. The cost of teacher turnover is estimated to be over $7 billion per year.” Pennsylvania state university, Issue brief
We recently published a blog on teachers’ self-care, which has created lots of feedback. Undoubtedly, we hit a critical issue. Taking in the response we received, we want to extend the discussion further to cover the aspect of school culture overall and how that impacts the wellbeing of teachers.
The study mentioned above in the USA found that “Social, emotional learning (SEL) programs that improve behaviour and promote SEL among students also help reduce teacher stress and create more positive engagement with students”.
Naturally, this is just one aspect but an important one. With the Mightifier curriculum and program, we provide teachers with SEL tools for their daily work with students, but we also help teachers as professional communities at schools. This has been proven to help with improving job satisfaction as well as teacher wellbeing all around. It also helps to build a new kind of school culture with SEL as its permanent element.
How does your school apply the SEL curriculum into daily work life? How does it support your teacher community and the school culture? Tell us. We would love to hear.
The Pennsylvania State University. Issue brief: Teacher Stress and Health Effects on Teachers, Students, and Schools.
This issue brief, created by the Pennsylvania State University with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, is one of a series of briefs addressing the need for research, practice, and policy on social and emotional learning (SEL). SEL is defined as the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.