Teachers Be Stressin'

According to a recent report that came out at the end of 2016, teachers are more stressed than ever, and finding it increasingly more difficult to de-stress. The following comes directly from an NPR story:

Forty-six percent of teachers say they feel high daily stress. That's on par with nurses and physicians. And roughly half of teachers agree with this statement: "The stress and disappointments involved in teaching at this school aren't really worth it." Between 30 and 40 percent of teachers leave the profession in their first five years," says Mark Greenberg, a professor of human development and psychology at Penn State. And that turnover, he says, costs schools — and taxpayers — billions of dollars a year, while research (like this and this) suggests teacher burnout hurts student achievement, too. Greenberg has studied America's schools for more than 40 years, and, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (also an NPR funder), he helped author the new brief exploring teacher stress.

"New teachers who receive steady mentoring are less likely to quit. Workplace wellness programs can also help. But both require schoolwide, even districtwide buy-in. If that's not realistic, Greenberg suggests a fix that is well within every teacher's control, one that just might surprise you ...Mindfulness."

Whoa. Are we surprised? Not at all. Mindfulness programs not only help the students but they help the teachers! (See our HMHB TEACHERS TALK video here.) The research also had some encouraging news as well, like the following:

Patricia Jennings wrote the book "Mindfulness For Teachers." In her research she discovered that teachers who received mindfulness training "showed reduced psychological distress and time urgency", which is this feeling like you don't have enough time. And then improvements in mindfulness and emotion regulation. Translation: These teachers were better able to cope with classroom challenges and manage their feelings, which made it easier for them to manage their students' big feelings. And that, says Jennings, helps students learn.

The key to having helpful mechanisms in place for teachers and students is to have a parent association, a school board, or an entire district committed to the mental health of its schools. HMHB is here for you: kids, teachers, schools, and districts! Stress no more ; D. Learn more by checking out our WHY HMHB? and GET STARTED pages on this web site.