Survey finds 70% of Texas teachers are considering quitting

Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 10:20 PM CDT
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AUSTIN, Texas (KBTX) - Amid a nationwide teacher shortage, the Texas State Teachers Association put out a survey with an alarming finding on the future of the state’s educators. A record 70 percent of teachers said they were seriously considering leaving the profession.

Zeph Capo, the president of the Texas American Federation of Teachers, joined First News at Four to discuss the burnout teachers are feeling.

According to Capo, the pandemic played a role in some teachers’ desire to leave the profession.

Teachers believed there was poor communication about the virus with the “conflicting information on COVID safety,” said Capo.

Following the mass shooting in Uvalde, teachers’ and students’ safety has been put into question.

On top of all of this, Texas teachers also get paid less than their counterparts in other states. They are $7,500 below the national average in pay.

“Most of our teachers are complaining that the pay and the voice have not kept up with the increasing workload, particularly coming out of the post-pandemic season. With these issues, with the extensive workload with the lack of respect with the abysmally low pay, many of our teachers are finding that the skills that they have are extremely marketable in the private sector,” explained Capo.

This coupled with the fact that there are openings and opportunities available in the workforce has added to educators’ willingness to look elsewhere. Teachers are already collaborative and goal-oriented, skills that many employers are looking for.

If schools want to keep their teachers, Capo suggests listening to what they believe is important.

“Give them a voice at work. Stop politicizing their career. Get rid of bureaucratic reports and additional paperwork that take their time away from their kids because what they most want is to be able to meet the needs of the students that are directly in front of them in their classrooms.”

Even those not involved in the government or school district can help make teachers’ lives easier.

“The most important people for many of our public school teachers is that classroom parent that serves as that support system and those classroom parents can do a lot to advocate for our teachers,” Capo said.

Capo suggested parents talk to their kid’s teachers so they can build a relationship with them.

Watch the full interview in the player above.

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