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Lack of funding is harming teacher wellbeing, Ofsted finds

Three-quarters of teachers say the job is affecting their mental wellbeing

Ofsted survey reveals that lack of funding is impacting on teachers

Three-quarters of teachers say the job is affecting their mental wellbeing

A lack of funding in schools is damaging teachers’ wellbeing, according to an Ofsted survey.

The research shows that three-quarters of teachers believe their job impacts negatively on their mental health, while 60 per cent claim it is affecting their physical health.

The main reasons for teaching having a negative impact were behaviour of pupils and inconsistent behaviour of management, as well as workload and marking.

Ofsted also found that the teachers were being impacted by a lack of support to manage behaviour; lack of time; "money/budget/funding"; resources; lack of communication and lack of a work-life balance.

Earlier this year Ofsted’s chief inspector Amanda Spielman sparked controversy when she said that the inspectorate had not seen evidence that funding pressures were affecting the quality of education schools deliver.

Today's findings follow 25 research visits to schools and further education providers, and a questionnaire about occupational wellbeing completed by 680 school staff and 213 staff from FE providers in June and July.

Tes reported in September that the Ofsted survey had found that teachers are highly stressed and anxious, with those working in primary schools more stressed than those in secondary schools.

Those findings were outlined by Daniel Muijs, the inspectorate’s head of research, at the ResearchED national conference.

Today's Ofsted blog reveals:

  • 28 per cent of respondents report low wellbeing at work; 26 per cent report medium; 35 per cent high and 11 per cent report very high wellbeing at work.
  • 31 per cent of teachers report low wellbeing at work compared with 18 per cent for senior leaders.
  • 25 per cent of all respondents have been absent from work due to health problems caused or made worse by work, excluding accidents.
  • 76 per cent of teachers report that their job impacts negatively on their mental health and 60 per cent report that it impacts negatively on their physical health.
  • 62 per cent of all respondents believe that teaching is not valued by society.
  • The top three factors that affect respondents’ wellbeing positively at work are: children/pupils, colleagues and the support they receive from them.

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