On the 15th November, Education Support published their seventh annual Teacher Wellbeing Index. The annual report provides an insight into the mental health and well-being of teachers and education staff working in the UK.
This year’s survey of over 3,004 education staff shows that well-being in the education sector is poor and continues to decline showing senior leaders remain at particular risk, with a significant decline in the overall well-being of classroom teachers.
Staff experience significant feelings of loneliness and isolation, with teachers and education staff feeling twice as lonely at work compared to the general population. Their analysis finds that there is a small but vulnerable population that reports loneliness along-side stress and/or burnout, pointing to elevated risk of severe mental health problems and suicide.
This year, Education Support asked about educators’ experience of inspections. The report showed that educators have little trust in the inspection system; raising questions about the effectiveness of inspections, the impact on school leader and staff well-being and implications for learner outcomes.
You will find the key findings summarised below.
Teacher Wellbeing Index 2023 – Key findings
- 78% of all staff are stressed
- 55% say that their organisation’s culture has a negative effect on their well-being
- 46% of staff say that employees who have mental health and wellbeing problems are not well supported by their organisations
Mental health of education staff
- 81% of all staff experienced symptoms due to their work (84% of senior leaders, 82% of school teachers)
- 39% of all staff have experienced a mental health issue in the past academic year (41% of school teachers, 37% of senior leaders)
- 45% of staff thought the symptoms could be signs of anxiety
- 28% of staff thought their symptoms could be signs of depression
- 35% of staff thought the symptoms could be signs of burnout (40% of senior leaders, 36% of school teachers)
- Staff well-being score is 43.65 using the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale (WEMWBS). This is lower than the national population scores and the lowest we have recorded since 2019.
Almost a sixth of education staff feel isolated at work, twice the rate of the general population.
- 14% of staff always, or often, feel lonely at work
- 15% of school teachers feel lonely at work
- 22% of staff from a global majority background feel lonely at work compared with 13% of white staff
- 17% of staff always, or often, feel isolated from others at work
School and college staff have little trust in the inspection system, particularly in England
- 73% of staff think inspections are not fit for purpose
- 73% of staff say inspections do not improve learner achievement
- 71% of staff say inspections negatively impact their mental health and well-being
- 64% of staff feel inspections do not deliver reliable judgements