Survey says many Texas teachers have thought of leaving the profession this year
AUSTIN, Texas (KBTX) - A new teacher satisfaction survey looks grim, but many aren’t surprised.
The online survey of 1,291 randomly selected K-12 Texas public school teachers found that 77 percent of those surveyed have “seriously considered” leaving the profession this year. This was a 19 percent jump from the 2020 findings and a 9 percent increase from last year. The survey was put out by the Charles Butt Foundation, a nonprofit organization named after the chair and CEO of H-E-B.
Zeph Capo, the President of the Texas American Federation of Teachers (AFT), joined First News at Four to discuss why teachers are dissatisfied and what is being done to change this.
“With the current atmosphere around education and around teachers, I think many of our teachers are feeling the brunt of some of these issues. The lack of respect is what we consistently hear from teachers, particularly from those that should know better, the people that we entrust to run our state and run our local school boards,” said Capo.
In addition, there are issues of low pay and an increased workload.
Capo warns that any teachers who are thinking of leaving should talk with a legal professional before making any long-term career decisions. People can lose their teaching license if they don’t get a release from the school district and leave in the middle of the year.
To help retain and recruit educators, the Texas AFT has been doing focus groups with a couple of hundred teachers around the state.
What they found was that teachers “want more voice on the job, they actually are the ones that don’t have a voice and don’t make the decisions. It’s the school leaders that do that,” said Capo.
As they hear from teachers, the Texas AFT is working with legislators and others to make sure that educators are able to put forward the ideas that they say will help improve the climate and the culture of their campuses. But the change can even start with parents and students.
According to Capo, the majority of teachers “are there for our kids and they actually love and believe in their communities and they want to have that trusting, deep relationship with their parents.”
He suggests parents speak to teachers and give them encouragement and support, saying “it only takes one kid, one family, or one parent to really make a difference and keep you going through that next hurdle.”
Watch the full interview in the player above.
Copyright 2022 KBTX. All rights reserved.