Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
WORKPLACE / JAN. 29, 2015
version 5, draft 5

Study Says Disengaged Schoolteachers Miss 2.3 Million Days Each Year

survey by Gallup interviewed more than 6,700 K-12 schoolteachers from each state in the United States including Washington D.C. The study was centered on the level of employee engagement among full-time teachers. According to the Gallup Daily tracking system, researchers assessed three different groups of teachers: "engaged," "not engaged," and "actively engaged."

Engaged teachers are defined as completely involved, happy, and passionate about the daily responsibilities of their career. They strive to seek solutions and to produce even better outcomes that not only benefit them, but everyone else involved.

Teachers who are not engaged are usually satisfied with their job in the same instance as fully engaged teachers. The only difference is this group is not completely dedicated to the demands of their work nor are they putting a lot of effort into their job.

The actively disengaged group shares similarities to not engaged teachers, except they lack happiness in all aspects of their job. They reveal this discontent "in ways that undermine what their coworkers accomplish."

Findings retrieved from January 2013 to September 2014 via phone interviews reveal the following:

  • 30 percent of teachers are engaged in their job and have missed the standard number of workdays, identical to the national average for all U.S. workers.
  • 57 percent that are not engaged make up 781,921 of workday absences.
  • 30 percent of actively disengaged teachers have missed 1,521,101 missed days at work.

Results found that absences for disengaged teachers outnumbered those who were reportedly engaged in their work. Actively uninvolved schoolteachers seem to be suffering more than those who are just simply not engaged. Yet, those who fall under both the, "not engaged" or "actively engaged" categories are said to miss nearly 2.3 million more days at work compared to "engaged" teachers. They also make up 70 percent of the U.S. teachers that should be entirely immersed in their profession. Researchers were able to come to these conclusions based on workplace performance and involvement. They mainly evaluated employee engagement by looking at a business’s overall absenteeism, productivity, client engagement, or profit.

The survey even covered one of the most important influences on an educator’s workday participation by asking this question: "During the past 30 days, for about how many days did poor health keep you from doing your usual activities?" The survey says that unhealthy days may contribute to skyrocketing numbers related to disengagement and absences.

"Engaged" teachers reported 10.1 unhealthy days per school year, while "not engaged" teachers only had a 1.2 difference of 11.3. Teachers who are "actively disengaged" have missed twice as many workdays as their "engaged" colleagues. They average 20.4 unhealthy days per school year.

A Gallup report from 2014 said that teachers complained about stressing on the job more than anything, which led to their workplace disconnection.

"Disengaged teachers are less likely to bring the energy, insights, and resilience that effective teaching requires to the classroom," the report stated. "They are less likely to build the kind of positive, caring relationships with their students that form the emotional core of the learning process."

The truth of the matter is that any type of disengagement tends to adversely affect the students more than anything, something most teachers need to consider before deciding to call-in to work.


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