Evidence is emerging showing the strong link between teacher autonomy, job satisfaction and retention rates in schools. Michelle Barker considers four new research findings

New research from the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) shows that involving teachers in CPD goal-setting increases their motivation and intention to stay in the profession.

Pressures on existing teachers have long been at boiling point, with unmanageable workloads and low reported job satisfaction cited as significant contributing factors for teachers debating the decision to stay or go.

The new NFER analysis (2020) and accompanying resource from the Teacher Development Trust (TDT) suggests teachers’ feelings of autonomy make a huge difference to their morale and intention to stay.

The report states: “Only around half of those with the lowest autonomy are intending to stay in teaching in the short term, compared to more than 85 per cent of those with the highest autonomy.”

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