- Parents and politicians are the top sources of "a lot of stress" for teachers, according to survey data from Teachers Pay Teachers, an online platform for teachers to exchange instructional materials and tools.
- When asked about respect for the profession, teachers in the South were more likely to say respect has decreased compared to two years ago. Florida, Texas and Pennsylvania saw high proportions of teachers reporting declining respect.
- The external pressures on educators from debates over teaching autonomy, curriculum restrictions and feelings of diminishing respect could impact whether school systems can successfully recruit and retain classroom leaders, said Teachers Pay Teachers.
Overall, the survey found nearly two-thirds — 65% — of educators say there is less respect for the teaching profession than two years ago. The TPT report does not go into detail about why teachers feel this way, but recent policy debates and decisions to loosen teacher hiring requirements and limit what is taught in classrooms have contributed to a belief that teachers are not well-respected, research shows.
Nearly 40% of teachers ranked politicians as the largest source of "a lot of stress," followed by parents (36%) and social media (34%). Survey results are based on responses from 1,270 active TPT users across U.S. schools. participants.
Participation in a teacher union can reduce educators' stress levels, according to a paper released Monday by the Economic Policy Institute. Researchers measured the stress levels of teachers in districts with collective bargaining against those with no union agreement and found a 14% difference in stress levels.
EPI said reduced stress levels for union-affiliated teachers may be due to support for teacher compensation, improved working conditions and advocacy for "teacher voice."
Job dissatisfaction among pre-K-12 teachers has grown from 45% to 79% since the start of the pandemic, according to polling conducted in June by Hart Research Associates on behalf of the American Federation of Teachers.
But while teacher morale has dipped, the public in general continues to hold teachers in high regard. Recent data by PDK International, which produces an annual poll of public attitudes toward education, shows 63% of respondents have a "great deal or good amount" of overall trust and confidence in their community's public school teachers.
Most — 54% — would give their local schools an A or B grade. That's the highest percentage in PDK polls since 1974, up 10 percentage points since the question was last asked in 2019.
But 62% of respondents said they would not want their child to become a local teacher in their community, citing poor pay and benefits, lack of respect, and the difficulties, demands and stress of the job. PDK conducted the national random-sample poll of 1,008 adults on June 17-25 in English and Spanish through the Ipsos KnowledgePanel.