George Lucas Educational Foundation

Readers' Survey 2007: Best Way Schools Can Keep New Teachers From Burning Out

Edutopia readers weigh in on their favorites.
Edutopia Team
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The resounding, all-purpose burnout first aid? The voice of experience. A struggling first-year teacher needs a role model, someone who can offer the professional and personal support he or she deserves. In fact, just the simple word support turned up again and again in your responses, even if all that means is to "praise the little things" and "pump 'em up; be positive!" Respect (especially from school administrators), pay raises, and smaller class sizes also made an impressive showing, and it seems eliminating excessive bureaucracy and paperwork could make a dent in exhaustion, too. Other fine ways to keep burnout at bay? "Single-malt scotch" and "venting rooms and free massages." 'Nough said.

Our Take

Flames Travel Upward

If administrative support is so crucial for teachers, we then wonder, who supports the administrators? Principal burnout can be as critical as teacher burnout, especially in the toughest school districts, where good administrators are needed most. Luckily, there are mentoring programs out there for principals, too. Here's a sampling of organizations and programs:

NEXT PAGE OF READERS' SURVEY: Best education role model

2007 Readers' Survey Index

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Janel 's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I remember my mentor in my first year of teaching. She assisted in my organizational skills, answered my questions, supported my decisions and provided encouragement. She also illustrated the separation of work from life. I reduce the possibility of burnout by maintaining outside of the school relationships and activities that are relaxing or exhilirating. I make time for myself. I enjoy my job as a teacher and it is part of my life, however it is not my entire life.

Geraldine's picture

Your blurb went directly in to principal burn-out. I'd like to read the full content concerning itself with teacher burn-out.

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