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Karolina Parding, Professor of Human Work Sciences at Luleå University of Technology. Photo: Yours View original picture , opens in new tab/window

Teachers dissatisfied with working conditions

Published: 23 March 2018

There is a widespread dissatisfaction among Swedish teachers with their working conditions. Four of ten teachers consider changing jobs, according to a new report from Luleå University of Technology, which includes a survey with nearly 2400 Swedish teachers.

– Our study confirms what is known before: that a large proportion of teachers feel that they have a poor working environment, among that poor conditions for competence development. It is very important that the principals think about how teachers' work is being led and organized, not least since we have a great need for new teachers in Sweden, says Karolina Parding, Professor of Human Work Sciences at Luleå University of Technology.

Survey among high school teachers

The new report from Luleå University of Technology, "Teacher's working conditions in context of marketization, privatization, selection and competition", is based on a survey with a representative selection of high school teachers.

2388 high school teachers have answered the questionnaire and the results show, among other things, that:

  • New teachers experience shortcomings in the introduction to the profession. Nearly two-thirds report that they had no access to a mentor when they started their work as teachers.
  • Half of the teachers state that they work in the evenings and weekends to manage their workload. They rarely or never manage their workload within their regulated working hours.
  • There is a great dissatisfaction with the competence development the employer offers.
  • Two thirds of the teachers use their free time to meet the need for competence development.
  • On the question "Do you want to change jobs at the moment", 40 percent say yes.

– The demands on teachers are high, and they experience a low level of support from the employer, says Karolina Parding.
One purpose of the study was to investigate differences in teachers' working conditions and working environment between municipal and private schools, but the researchers could not see any major differences.

Pressure about higher grades

Almost all teachers who participated in the survey say they experience a freedom in how they perform their work, while there are teachers who have experienced pressure from students, guardians or principals to give higher grades.

The study's results show how important it is to create better working conditions for the country's teachers, says Karolina Parding.
– Both to retain the competent and committed teachers we have, but also to attract and recruit new teachers in the future.

Karolina Parding

Karolina Parding, Professor

Phone: +46 (0)920 493029
Organisation: Human Work Sciences, Humans and Technology, Department of Social Sciences, Technology and Arts

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