Long hours drive away graduates

4th November 2005 at 00:00
Graduates who go into teaching have far higher job satisfaction than than those in other professions - but they are still being forced out by the heavy workload, a report has found.

More than nine out of 10 graduate teachers find their job interesting and challenging, compared to 77 per cent of graduates in other jobs. And only 7 per cent said they would chose another job.

But the study, and figures released by the Department for Education and Skills, reveal there is still a serious problem of teacher retention.

Workload and long hours were the most frequently-cited reasons for quitting. Just over half of graduate teachers said they worked more than 46 hours a week, compared to about 16 per cent in other jobs.

Other downsides of the job cited by the teachers interviewed were bureaucracy, a lack of work-life balance, pupil behaviour and lack of support in their early career.

But they also felt that they had better promotion prospects. Two-thirds said there were opportunities to reach managerial level, compared to just half of those who went into other professions.

Researchers Kate Purcell and Nick Wilton, from Bristol Business School and Peter Elias, from Warwick University's Institute for Employment Research, looked at the graduate class of 1999 and found that those entering the teaching profession were more likely to be female and to have gone to a state-maintained secondary school.

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