Why Teachers Stop Teaching

As noble as the job is, teaching is tough. So tough, in fact, that around half of new teachers stop teaching within five years of starting. Why’s this the case? Let’s break it down.

First of all, teachers feel immense pressure from their school and district administrators to make sure their students do well on standardized tests. About 72 percent of teachers say they feel “moderate” to “extreme” pressure. This makes the job far more stressful and constrictive. If the end goal of a class is to make sure students receive high standardized test scores, teachers feel forced to teach to the test rather than what they feel is important to learn.

Additionally, teachers put far more time into their jobs than school hours suggest. When teachers are not in school, they are planning lessons, grading papers, and tutoring students. While teachers spend the same percentage of their time working at their school as other professionals spend working at their workplaces, teachers spend more time working at home and are more likely to work on Sundays. This expectation that teachers must use their own time to prepare for lessons and do not receive overtime for it leaves teachers feeling like they can never escape from work.

Teaching can without a doubt be a high stress job — especially when the teacher feels it is their duty to go the extra mile for their students.