Teacher Mental Health

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Background Information

Research has shown teaching to be the most stressful occupation in the UK.This was confirmed by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in 2000.

Since that date, evidence suggests that stress levels amongst teachers have risen.  High stress levels should be a cause for concern for both economic and health reasons.

High levels of staff absence through both mental and physical illness are known to result from excessive stress. Stress-related mental illness is often a career ending event. Long term depression amongst teachers and ex-teachers is common. Some go on to commit suicide. According to the Samaritans, suicide rates amongst teachers are 40% higher than the population as a whole.

Stress is the predominant reason cited by teachers for leaving the  profession. The cost of such a loss is significant. Lost teachers must be replaced and the recruitment and training of teachers is an expensive business.

There is mounting evidence that stress-related illness amongst teachers has increased in recent years.

There is also strong evidence that in schools where stress is reduced teacher absence  and turnover is much lower.  As a result, pupil standards are higher.

Contact Information:   John Illingworth, 17, Park Avenue, Woodthorpe, Nottingham.  NG5 4HS.  Email:  john@teachermentalhealth.org.uk