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Survey: 70% of Texas teachers are considering quitting their jobs

Chron logo Chron 8/9/2022 Hearst Newspapers
Teachers in Texas said pandemic-related stress and low wages are the biggest motivators leading them to consider quitting their jobs. © FG Trade/Getty Images

Teachers in Texas said pandemic-related stress and low wages are the biggest motivators leading them to consider quitting their jobs.

A large portion of teachers employed in Texas are considering leaving their jobs positions in education. According to a survey conducted by the Texas State Teacher's Association in the second quarter of 2022, 70% of the teachers surveyed said they were considering quitting. About 688 teachers who are members of the TSTA participated in the questionnaire. 

That's the highest percentage the survey has ever recorded since its conception. In 2018, before the onset of the coronavirus pandemic and back-to-back school years featuring a mix of remote and hybrid learning, just over half of the teachers surveyed had the same response.

“Lingering stress from the pandemic is a factor, but it isn’t the only one," said TSTA President Ovidia Molina. "Inadequate pay, political attacks on educators and the failure of state leaders to protect the health and safety of students and school employees also have combined to drive down the morale of teachers to the lowest level in recent memory and endanger our public school system."

Motivating factors

About 94% of the respondents said the pandemic increased the stress in their professional lives, 84% said their workload and planning requirements increased, and 41% said they took extra jobs during the school year to meet their families’ financial needs. The Texas teachers surveyed reported an average salary of $59,000, which is nearly $8,000 below the national average.

“Many of these teachers will be missing from our classrooms this fall, and for others, it is only a matter of time,” Molina said.

Since 2018, TSTA officials said teachers’ salaries have increased by an average of $5,779.

Despite the pay raises, many respondent teachers said much of that increase has gone to other expenses such as annual health insurance premiums. Teachers who had to take on secondary employment to make ends meet also said they would need at least a $12,000 pay raise from their main jobs to be able to quit their second jobs.

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