Dr. Jessica Kamuru, Assistant Professor in the School of Education at Avila University, has some wonderful insight on teacher burnout and the well-being of preservice teachers, and how they can take care of themselves in the classroom.
As a professor who teaches practicum, I am always looking for current trends in education that will impact my preservice teachers. Right now, I have been thinking a lot about teacher burnout and how I can help my preservice teachers to protect themselves. During my conversations with in-service teachers, I hear many who are experiencing burnout at an all-time high due to (1) teaching during the ongoing pandemic after a year with hybrid and distance learning, (2) current constant changes to school policy, and (3) the secondary stress of their students who have had to endure innumerable hardships.
Last school year, there were a number of studies conducted on teacher burnout and teacher attrition due to the ongoing pandemic. Researchers discovered that teachers were leaving the profession at a higher rate than during other times. According to a recent Rand study, this is even more true for teachers of color.
As a result of these trends, I want to encourage preservice teachers to be proactive to ensure their wellbeing. We often have conversations about how they can take care of themselves in our class. However, once they start their career, there are some ways that administrators can help. In this article by Edutopia, there are some practical ideas that may help to support both teachers and administrators.
These ideas include:
- Survey Teachers—And Listen to Them
- Give Teachers an (Actual) Break
- Stop Watching the Clock
- Create Shared Agreements
- Plan for Regular and Informal Check-Ins
- Schedule Planning Time for Teachers
- Model and Support Wellness
“To support teacher retention during this challenging time, it will take the intentional work of teachers, university professors, and school administrators.”Dr. Jessica Kamuru, Assistant Professor