Educators pursuing psychological advice for a range of occupational issues has risen by 36% since 2013 and today, over one in ten (13%) is considering resignation according to new referrals data.
The concerning news comes after a review of referrals made from the education sector to AccessEAP, a leading not-for-profit provider of employee assistance programs and highlights the need for specialised support for teachers and the unique challenges they face.
Marcela Slepica, Director of Clinical Services at AccessEAP says, “One of the biggest challenges I see educators encounter is feeling responsible for the mental health of students. The challenge of providing support to students can be extremely difficult as they do not receive training. It is confronting when a student discloses a mental health issue or talks about harming themselves.
“This and other career concerns such as evolving technology and increasing demands from parents and students, has attributed to the high levels of anxiety felt by one in three (34%) teachers. Some of the leading impacts this can have include difficulty concentrating (32%) and feeling less productive (25%).” adds Slepica.
Alongside the day to day stressors of the workplace, teachers are increasingly worried about their jobs, with career concerns (11%) rising to become the second biggest workplace issue for these employees.
While some teachers may be drawn to a new role, many are turning to Employee Assistance Programs to find the help they need, with self-referrals increasing by 6% since 2013. This rise is a welcome step adds Slepica. “It’s encouraging to see that more teachers are proactively looking after their mental wellbeing, including almost twice as many men than five years ago. At this time of the year with the final term approaching, exams and end of year activities adding to the demands, it’s important that employers make staff aware of their EAP so that they can talk through their concerns with a professional, rather than looking to leave their roles.”
For additional information on how to manage teacher anxiety visit www.accesseap.com.au
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