Company: Accenture Song
Client: Tennessee Department of Education
The US is experiencing one of the most severe teacher shortages in our nation's history. American educators are losing autonomy in the classroom and gaining workload while salaries remain stagnant.
Teaching as a profession suffers from a lack of respect and devaluation of the teacher experience. Children ultimately bear the effects when even the most passionate teachers consider leaving the profession.
Collaborating with a state education agency, we reimagined the teacher's experience by developing strategies for increasing teacher retention. After a robust research effort, we listened to the experiences of more than 130 educators, through which we uncovered seven thematic insights:
- Teachers are not seen or treated as experts in their field, even with years of experience and advanced degrees.
- There are few distinctions between master teachers and newer teachers, creating an inefficient use of time and expertise.
- Teachers feel that unrealistic responsibilities placed on them lowers their work quality and obligates them to take on roles for which they lack expertise.
- Teachers feel performance evaluations lack the nuance to properly reflect their craft excellence.
- Teachers rarely report leaving the profession due to school leadership; however, school leadership is a common reason to stay.
- Teachers feel that trust and understanding are fostered when district administration is present.
- Teachers express difficulty making ends meet. Salaries are perceived as stagnant, yet expectations increase yearly.