Study: 30% Of Educators Plan To Retire Or Leave Profession


Tuesday, October 19th 2021, 4:17 pm
By: Erica Rankin


As the battle with COVID-19 continues across the state, it continues inside classrooms as well.

Teachers are feeling the effects of the virus mentally, emotionally and some physically.

Education professionals said last year they were concerned and afraid of the unknown with COVID-19. This year, they said they are still concerned and afraid but this time of the known.

"We know how bad this is," said Carolyn Crowder, Oklahoma Education Association executive director. "We know it is happening and yet we are uncertain we will have the tools and support to get through it."

Crowder said teachers and support staff across the state have been feeling stressed, exhausted and frustrated.

"Trying to navigate the kind of situation they are in and still provide the learning supports that student need," said Crowder.

Crowder said with struggling to keep up with it all, about 30% of teachers and support staff are planning to retire early or leave the profession, and it is already happened.

"I had a call the other day from one of our teachers," said Crowder. "He walked out that day. Just said, 'that is it. I can't do this. Someone else can use all my stuff I used to decorate my classroom. I can't do this anymore.'"

Crowder said if the situation in schools does not turn around, finding teachers to teach in the state is going to become catastrophic.

"Teachers were called heroes and we heard that a lot this past year," said Crowder. "This year, they feel the respect has waned, because they're being blamed for things that are out of their control. There is some learning disruption that has happened and many of those things are out of their control."