More teachers suffer stress over Scotland’s new curriculum reforms

The Herald Scotland is reporting a major survey that suggests the health of teachers in Scotland is suffering because of the controversial new school curriculum…

A poll of 7000 teachers found 61 per cent said they were more stressed this year compared to 2013, while 15 per cent described themselves as “extremely stressed”.

Just under half said stress affected them all the time and three-quarters said they were unhappy with their workload.

The survey of members of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) teaching union concluded well-being and satisfaction within the profession was low and stress levels were “very high”.

The survey comes at a time when teachers’ workload is under scrutiny because of the implementation of the new Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) in primary and secondary schools.

This year has seen the introduction of National 4 and National 5 exams, which have replaced Standard Grades in secondary as part of the reforms.

Previous surveys have shown staff struggling to understand the purpose of the changes and having little time to adapt their teaching techniques.

Many teachers also complained about unacceptable workloads as well as inadequate support from the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), which developed the new exams.

The report by Edinburgh-based independent marketing company Scott Porter Research concluded: “The main issues to resolve are … excessive workload and working hours being demanded.

“Linked to this is the very large amount of unnecessary paperwork, number and speed of changes particular to CfE, and issues with management and leadership.

“All in all, it appears teachers and lecturers feel they are climbing a never-ending mountain that makes more and more demands of them, with little prospect of respite.”

…The survey also found 33 per cent of teachers felt generally satisfied in their working life and 22 per cent described themselves as having a very good balance between work and home life.

Only 16 per cent reported no current work-related stress, while 14 per cent reported lower levels of stress compared to last year…

More at: More teachers suffer stress over new curriculum reforms

It is not clear from the report whether this is a one-off survey in which respondents have said whether they are more stressed now than previously or whether it is an annual survey in which the results this year show a deterioration in terms of stress reporting compared with the equivalent results previously. The later would be a lot more significant than the former as respondents will always be likely to claim they are feeling what they are feeling more so now than in the past, especially a negative consideration. That aside, if you are teaching in Scotland, are you starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel in terms of all the changes and the associated workload or not? Please let us know in the comments or via Twitter…

Lib Dem minister condemns ex-teachers’ leader for linking LGBT groups with paedophilia
Guest Post: Manabu Watanabe on enthusiasm for learning in East Asian education
Categories: Scotland and Teaching.


  1. MajorAide

    SchoolsImprove it should’ve not added extra hours to teachers, but it should be efficient & effective for student’s development.#opinion

  2. changepatriot

    SchoolsImprove This is beginning to sound like the rest of the UK!!! Didn’t C any mention of this in’Sunshine over Leith’ !

Let us know what you think...