Employment crisis: Almost all countries in Europe suffer from teacher shortages

Employment crisis: Almost all countries in Europe suffer from teacher shortages

According to a Senate report, the employment crisis is affecting most of our neighbors, including those who pay their teachers well. The Finance Committee demands that the rewards be differentiated according to the subjects taught and geographical regions.

While France is currently concerned about its problems finding teachers, a Senate report notes that the concern is much broader. “All European countries are facing increasing difficulties in recruiting teachers, which indicates a real ‘crisis of gravity’ for the teacher profession over the next few years,” He refers to a study by the Finance Committee entitled “The Crisis of Attractiveness of the Teaching Profession: What Are the Responses from European Countries?” Delivered on Thursday by Senator LR Gerard Longue.

In France, the low salary of teachers, which pays 1.1 cm at the beginning of their career while bac + 5 is required of them, is often considered one of the main reasons for discontent with this profession. However, the report notes that teacher shortages are also felt in countries where salaries are high. In Germany, for example, where the average annual salary is twice that of teachers in the European Union (between 2,774 and 4,246 euros per month), 26,000 teachers could be less than primary school teachers by 2025.

“Only Finland and the German-speaking community in Belgium expressly state that they do not experience any difficulties in terms of supply and demand for teachers”, The report notes. Difficulties are not necessarily related to the profession as a whole but generally affect particular disciplines (mainly scientific) or geographic areas to a greater degree.

Highest-paid math teachers?

Despite this tense European context, Special Rapporteur Gérard Longue It does not underestimate the French difficulties. Thus, in the period of a long decade, the number of candidates for national education competitions increased from 50,000 to 30,000 per year. Teacher resignations are on the rise, with the rate dropping from 0.05% in 2008-2009 to 0.32% in 2020-2021. Among the trained teachers, that is, those in their first year of practice, 3.2% closed the door to national education in 2020-2021, compared to 1% ten years ago. “While these figures are still low compared to the salaries of the Ministry of National Education, the Special Rapporteur nevertheless considers the regularity of the increase in resignations a very worrying sign,” Can we read?

Now what to do? If money wasn’t everything, “The attractiveness of the profession necessarily has a financial spring”, Gerard Longue Point. Who takes England as a model. There, new holders work in difficult areas and teach at least half the time it takes a subject in tension, as their student loan is paid off. Teachers of mathematics, physics, chemistry and computer science are paid better than others.

Gérard Longuet advocates a similar approach in France, where mathematics teachers can be paid better than their colleagues in history and geography, for example, the former having more job opportunities in the private sector than the latter. “If you want to have good math teachers, you have to have people who are happy to be math teachers,” Defend the senator. Likewise, a teacher in Paris may earn more than a classmate in Lauserne, and the cost of living varies greatly in these two regions.

Rating vs Increase

Such a differentiation of salaries among civil servants, who would presumably benefit from the same situation, would constitute a legal concern; The Special Rapporteur therefore proposes that such bonuses be provided to contract workers, which “It would make it possible to respond in part to the shortage of qualified contract personnel affecting some academies, without forming a global response to the problem.”

It also suggests further evaluation of French language teachers and indexing of files Bonuses or other financial rewards on these reviews. Internal assessment, by colleagues or the principal, is mandatory in 27 European education systems, The report mentions. In the face of this flammable topic, he adds: “Assessment cannot be taken into account in the career path of teachers without many safeguards, in particular the continuing engagement of teachers in the construction of this assessment.”

In addition to the financial aspect, the report recommends more support for new teachers during the first two or three years of practice, Especially through guidance. Possibly way to avoid premature resignations. While this 100-page Senate document addresses various facts and ways to improve, it does not provide firm answers. This report is not exhaustive and has the advantage of opening a discussion. Defending Gerard Longuet.

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