State DOE asks: In Georgia, 47 percent of teachers leave the profession within five years. Why?

Update on Jan. 7, 2016: DOE has released the results of this survey, which was taken by 53,000 Georgia teachers.

 

Can anyone help the Georgia Department of Education figure out why teachers are leaving the field in droves?

Here is the survey DOE is asking teachers to complete:

Mirza_Khushnam_14Fall_Illu764_AJC 6The Georgia Department of Education is studying the reasons why teachers leave public education as a profession. We are inviting current public school classroom teachers across the state to take a few moments to answer the following 7 questions to help us better understand how to reverse this trend in Georgia. We greatly appreciate your time and feedback and know that working together we can make a difference in public education in Georgia.

ALL RESPONSES ARE ANONYMOUS.

What school system do you work for? (OPTIONAL)

What grade levels do you teach this school year?

How many years have you been a teacher in a public school in Georgia? (required)

If you had a student about to graduate from high school, how likely would you be to encourage teaching as a profession? (REQUIRED)

In Georgia, 47% of teachers leave the profession within five years. Rank the following statements often cited as the predominant reason a teacher leaves the profession. Ranking a statement with a 1 will indicate the most predominant reason and ranking a statement as an 8 will indicate the least predominant reason that teachers leave the profession in your opinion.. (REQUIRED)

Level of benefits/compensation

Level of preparation when entering the profession

Level of teacher participation in decisions related to profession

Level/quality of ongoing support, resources and professional learning

Non-teaching school responsibilities/duties

Number and emphasis of mandated tests

School level/District level leadership

Teacher evaluation method

Look back at question 5 and see which statement you ranked as number one. Explain why you chose this statement. (OPTIONAL)

Please list any additional reasons why you believe 47% of the teachers in Georgia leave the profession within five years.

Reader Comments 0

19 comments
TCHargrove
TCHargrove

As a part of their annual evaluation, ALL central office certificated personnel, principals and asst. principals should walk in the teachers' shoes by teaching at the lowest socio-economic school in their district. Then they can legitimately critique/evaluate teachers.

DuncanMcKelvey
DuncanMcKelvey

I posted my previous comment before I read the other notes from readers.  From that perusal it seems obvious that this survey or others like it have been around for several decades, and for several decades the situation for education has gone from bad to worse.

Who's kidding who??  Nobody in Admin or Government is serious about doing this better.

I only wish it was possible for teachers to sue students and their parents for abuse.  That might put a crook in their noses....

DuncanMcKelvey
DuncanMcKelvey

From what I've heard of the general abuse by students that teachers have to put up with with really no recourse, it shouldn't be difficult to figure out why they're leaving.

The average adult has enough problems/stress in their lives without having to put up with more from know-nothing punks.  From what I've heard, teachers get little to no support from administration during student confrontations..., and certainly not from parents.

The situation is ridiculous.

Maccabeus
Maccabeus

The question they should ask is "why haven't you left yet?"

The answer I hear most, "I only have X years before I retire/am vested."

readcritic
readcritic

Send someone in to work undercover and you will see how ludicrous education is, especially as guided by administrators and government. 

Scater
Scater

My Mother was a teacher in the Washington D.C. suburbs. Number one reason she left, student behavior problems and support from administration. Every parent wanted their kids to get good grades but if the kids couldn't even sit and listen for 30 minutes, how. When your teaching social behavior, instead of subject matter and then rated on test scores?

Hillary's Emails
Hillary's Emails

Turnover is much lower in suburban schools, as any parent or job seeker will attest.

And despite the blog's malcontents, there are far, far more applicants everywhere than there are vacant teaching positions.

FlaTony
FlaTony

Two big points missed by this survey - 1) many teachers are leaving later in their careers due to the ludicrous evaluation schemes; top-down, cookbook, one-size-fits-all required lessons; and the financial hits they are taking. 2) the majority of teachers that leave during the first five years have no business in the classroom and should be seeking employment elsewhere.


Our state leaders say we have to do more to attract and retain the very best, but they have cut salaries and benefits for teachers. Surely, they understand there is a connection.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@FlaTony 

They understand the connection, which shows the lack of respect that our state leaders have for teachers in Georgia.  Eventually, teachers unions may be needed in Georgia.

vikingvol
vikingvol

I can't tell you how many times I've filled out similar surveys. They already know the answers but refuse to acknowledge them. Until the DOE gets serious about teacher retention, it will only get worse. Just one more reason why I left the profession after 35 years of teaching.

BearlyReadable
BearlyReadable

I received a similar survey when I left the profession in 1979.  They could've saved the money and simply acted upon the answers teachers gave them then.  Yet, this seems to be the way the system works.  Spend money on a new survey and turn a deaf ear to those on the front line.  At least the public is given the perception that those in charge care and really want to know.  Some will perceive this as cynical, but I've been around enough to see the game that is played.  Bless those of you still in the classroom.  Continue to fight the good fight.  It is a noble cause.  You will never get the praise or pay you deserve.  Your reward will be at the end of your career when you look back upon the lives you touched and influenced. You will be content in knowing you've had a meaningful career.  Maintain your integrity and never sell-out.  If you are in it for the right reasons, these rewards will suffice.  Again, bless you.

Looking4truth
Looking4truth

Only one reason I decided to get out - I was tired of parents asking me to do all the work while not expecting anything out of their kids.  One of the parents my last year asked me to "get their child's notebook organized."  That was the last straw. 

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

IMHO they missed at least one significant reason teachers leave:  Unending pressure to perform miracles as the ONLY one responsible for student achievement.

dg417s
dg417s

@Maureen - Has DOE given any indication when  or if the results of this survey will be released? I answered it a few weeks ago myself.

Sam_Hill
Sam_Hill

Seeing how public sector employees like teachers, firefighters, cops, judges, etc., are rated slightly below pond scum in Tea Party state's like Georgia, is it any surprise?

Jackalope
Jackalope

@Sam_Hill Not just Tea Party states, and not just teachers, firefighters, cops, judges, etc...ALL public employees are treated like pond scum.  The difference is that in other fields, like IT, Finance, Personnel, etc., the good employees don't have to stay.  They can go to the private sector and make twice the money.  It's only the people who have no private sector equivalent who pretty much have to take it.  But the gist of your statement is correct....signed, former pond scum.


class80olddog
class80olddog

Are you kidding? Listen to the stories told by teachers on this blog about working conditions ( and yes respect) and you will understand. No support on discipline, made to change grades, made to promote students, no support on truancy. Teachers are the first to bear the brunt of cost cutting- never administrators. Most money doesn't make it down to classroom

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

Aretha Franklin sang it best, years ago: R-E-S-P-E-C-T, or as it applies here, the lack thereof.