Educator resignations reached a record high last year, a new report shows, as teacher burnout and stress leave claims intensify in Tasmanian schools and colleges.
The Department of Education’s latest Annual Report shows 271 Tasmanian educators walked away from the teaching profession over the past year – up 49 per cent on the year prior.
It also shows stress leave claims spiked at an all-time high, jumping 46 per cent on the previous year to 91.
The numbers underline the dire and untenable working conditions in Tasmanian schools and colleges which educators have been warning about, but the State Government has failed to address, said Australian Education Union Tasmania President David Genford.
“It is horrifying that Tasmania is losing good quality teachers because our State Government refuses to adopt the solutions educators have put to them, leaving students missing out” he said.
“How many red flags does our government need? We cannot continue letting our students and educators down by allowing them to learn and work in a system that is so broken.
“Premier Rockliff promised to deliver a nation-leading education system in Tasmania, yet instead we’re dealing with a crisis.”
The latest figures follow the release of the Department’s Key Data Report earlier this year which revealed attrition rates for educators with less than five years’ experience grew 50 per cent.
Mr Genford said unless urgent action is taken to address the state’s education crisis – such as implementation of the AEU’s Lifting solutions presented to the Government last year – the state’s growing teacher burnout would continue.
“We’re hearing more and more stories of educators cutting back their hours or walking away entirely because they cannot cope with the workload demands keeping them from doing their job, which is to meet every student’s learning needs,” he said.
“Tasmania already has a crippling teacher shortage, but when more and more teachers walk away citing burnout, something has to give.”
Mr Genford said ballooning educator workloads and the state’s chronic teacher shortage were some of the reasons educators across the state were taking stop work action next month.
“Tasmanian educators are supported to take stop work action by many within the community who share concerns about teacher shortages, the staffing crisis and the under-resourcing of schools, leaving students missing out,” he said.
“As long as the Government fails to listen and act, educators will keep fighting to lift learning and improve working conditions.”