UNSUNG HEROES: TEACHERS SPEAK OUT ABOUT TEACHING, LEARNING, AND JOB SATISFACTION

Gina Berridge, Vella Goebel, Clarissa Willis

Abstract


Abstract

Teaching is a challenging profession in itself, but coupled with high stakes testing and scrutiny by politicians and the media, it has become a discouraging and insecure profession. This research study sought to identify beliefs of teachers about teaching and learning in today’s culture of accountability. Eighty-one of the participants (88%) taking the survey were currently employed. Of those participants currently employed, sixty-four of the participants (70%) taught in a K-12 public school district, eight (9%) taught in K-12 private non-parochial school districts, and thirteen (14%) taught in a parochial school setting. Fifty-five participants (60%) were relative beginners to teaching, having taught 1-6 years. Sixteen participants (18%) had taught 7-10 years, eleven participants (12%) had been in the teaching profession 11-20 years and two participants (2%) had taught more than twenty years.  Even though most of the teachers in this study felt valued in their community, they felt their profession, namely teaching, was not highly respected. This would seem to indicate that the individuals who responded felt personally valued, although they saw their profession overall as one that lacked respect.


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