On World Teachers' Day, the Zagreb Institute for Social Research on Wednesday published the findings of a survey showing that teachers are satisfied with their work, but that "it is necessary to work on raising their social status," state agency Hina reported.
The survey was conducted from June to August, covering 3,634 teachers from 159 primary and secondary schools in Croatia, and followed a research project on changes in the organization of education due to Covid-19. The findings showed that most teachers continue to enjoy their work and that it fulfils them. Still, primary and secondary school staff see their work as extremely demanding in comparison with the time before the pandemic.
They say the most significant stressors are being overburdened with administrative obligations, feeling responsible for pupils’ success, and additional tasks because of absent teachers.
Compared with secondary school teachers, those in primary schools to a greater extent cite dealing with parents’ or guardians’ concerns or complaints as significant stress, as well as keeping classroom disciplined and adjusting teaching to pupils with special needs. Also, 67 percent of teachers are concerned about the economic uncertainty, while this does not represent a source of concern for only 13.4 percent.
Furthermore, 95.8 percent of teachers say that politicians don’t appreciate their views and 88.8 percent that they can’t impact the education policy. Also, 69.9 percent of teachers are unhappy with their wages. The survey also found that 60.5 percent of 8,418 secondary school leavers agree with teachers’ claim that they are “insufficiently appreciated” in Croatia and the most successful students show the highest level of agreement with that claim.
The findings conclude that the “low social status” of the teacher’s profession poses a serious challenge for Croatia, as it will continue to have a negative impact on those currently working in education and on attracting competent young people to work in schools.
“The findings show that it is necessary to raise awareness of the importance of working in schools and to work together on raising the social status of education workers,” said Boris Jokic, head of the Institute for Social Research