All-time high 40,000 teachers quit sector blighted by privatisation and unnecessary inspections
The teaching sector saw the biggest exodus in its history last year, with just under one in eleven qualified teachers quitting the profession entirely – a staggering 40,000 loss. Including retirements, the number rose to a fraction under 44,000, one in ten.
The number of head teachers leaving teaching was also at a record high and the number of teachers leaving after only a year of qualified teaching also grew.
Overall teacher numbers are slightly up since 2010, by 6% – but pupil numbers grew by 11% in the same period, driving up class sizes and contributing to one of the many growing stresses on those who teach and aim to inspire our children, alongside privatisation in the form of forced academisation, unnecessary and punitive inspections, massive increases in the numbers of children attending school hungry because of burgeoning poverty driven by government callousness and corporate greed, relentless cuts to resources, Conservative contempt and other factors. The government has missed its teacher recruitment target in all but one year of the last decade.
Tory Education Secretary Gillian Keegan said something meaningless and misleading in response, betraying yet more of her lack of understanding of, concern for and connection with the vastly important sector she is supposed to be running.
The National Education Union will strike on a further two days early next month – 5 and 7 July – and its joint general secretaries have slammed Keegan for not even bothering to try to negotiate, an extension of the Tories’ reckless disregard for industrial relations and the nation’s wellbeing that has been seen grotesquely in the rail workers’ dispute.
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