Heavy Teacher Workloads-The primary task of every teacher is to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully succeed in the outside world and thereby enhance society. The classroom is an ideal environment which gives teachers access to the hearts of their students. Teachers have an opportunity to instill values and principles that will prepare students for a lifetime of social excellence.
Heavey Teacher Workloads
However, a teacher’s workload can become so overwhelming that he or she may leave the career after the first year. The size of the classroom, the behavior of challenging students, the requirements of standardized test, the piles of paper, lesson planning and presentation, multiple assessment routines, and the demands of the administration can all lead new teachers to excessive burnout.
Excessive burnout can lead to massive teacher shortages. Lack of effective teachers is an urgent problem in many school districts across America. Out of desperation, many districts come up with programs that accelerate the training and licensing process for new teachers. But the problem of demanding workloads still won’t go away, regardless of the number of remedial projects initiated to bring new teachers into a district.
The problem of being overwhelmed is widespread. According to a recent survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, nearly three quarters of talented teachers have thought about changing their careers.
Heavy teacher workloads are mainly the fault of administration. Pushing teachers to meet the requirements of standardized test, close the achievement gap and to seize the competitive edge in educational recognition are enforced by the higher administrative educational officials. Teachers must work hard under pressure to meet expectations.
Teachers can become exhausted when they are pressured to teach in order to satisfy the requirements of the standardized test. This type of teaching takes away creativity and limits the introduction of more significant material that could meet the needs of particular students. In addition, studies show that the state standardized test is not sufficient enough to evaluate the skills of most minorities. The test is designed more specifically for more privilege students rather than students in more oppressive school environments.
Extending schools hours, more tests, specialty schools and several other programs, including “”No Child Left Behind Act” have failed to close the achievement gap. Minority students, particularly African American and Hispanic students are still struggling to reach the academic milestones that white students have achieved. New approaches to closing the achievement gap have not narrowed the educational divide between the two groups of students.
The Competitive Edge
When administration pushes for the competitive edge in order to win students and parents to the district, these activities can result in teachers struggling with heavy workloads. The priority is coverage, not quality. In many districts, teachers must cover several subjects in order to meet scheduled deadlines and administrative expectancies. But anytime competition becomes more important than delivering a quality education, a school district is cheating the teachers, students and parents. Instead of mastery in specified, academic areas, recognition for coverage becomes the norm.
Sequence of consequences
When teachers are overwhelmed with heavy teacher workloads, several consequences can arise and destroy the quality of teaching.
Days of Exhaustion
In order to effectively teacher a classroom full of expectant students, a teacher needs plenty of energy and clarity. Coming to school exhausted from grading tons of paper and designing multiple lesson plans for different grade levels can spell chaos for the classroom teachers. Instruction becomes less effective because it is usually rushed through.
Related Health Issue
The stress of heavy teacher workloads can lead to serious health problems such as chronic headaches, high blood pressure, and heart issues, especially when new teachers are pushing themselves too far due to fear of losing their jobs. A classroom of challenging students only adds to the stress and chaos of the classroom.
Teachers who are frustrated with the administration cannot teacher effectively. They view the administration as un-supportive and out of touch with the demands of the classroom. This disconnection can lead too high turnover and teacher shortages in many school districts. As a consequence of teacher shortages, many districts submit to accelerated programs designed to attract teachers who may be less interested in teacher and more interested in earning a paycheck.
The Key Solution for Dealing with Heavy Teacher Workloads
The solutions to heavy teacher workloads must begin with administration. Reducing the teacher’s burden must begin with technology designed to educate the student without much input from the teacher. One ideal suggestion is the creation of a virtual classroom where students can engage in learning without teachers drowning in a ton of lesson planning. This unique idea would teach students to become more responsible for their own education and have fun doing it.
Math, English, science, and social studies can all be taught in a virtual environment. Sure there
will be teachers in the classroom to facilitate and provide critical instructions and assessments, but the virtual programs will do the rest. In addition, this form of learning through technology would have more students excited about coming to school and probably would reduce several classroom management problems. Students would be too engaged in their virtual environment to act out due to boredom or provocation.