'Data on teachers’ lives during the pandemic': An ODI report
The Open Data Institute (ODI), a not-for-profit co-founded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Sir Nigel Shadbolt, has published a report revealing the impact of Covid-19 on teachers’ and pupils’ lives.
The report, entitled ‘Data on teachers’ lives during the pandemic’, looks at the impact of the pandemic on teachers’ and pupils’ lives, through the lens of new data made available to the ODI, as well as various open data sources and in-depth qualitative research.
The ODI was given access to new aggregated and anonymised data from one of the major UK teachers’ unions, the NASUWT's, annual ‘Big Question’ survey for the first time.
Continuing on from last November’s ‘Data about children’s lives in the pandemic’ report, this report aims to demonstrate how timely and systematic national data collection can provide valuable insights into the most urgent and pressing challenges of our time.
This report was written in March 2021, at a time when UK schools were beginning to reopen fully for the second time during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. There were already indications of significant losses to children’s learning and well-being, but little information on where the losses would be concentrated, and where additional resources were most needed. There was also very little data about the experiences of teachers during the pandemic; an under-researched area during compulsory school closures, but one that is particularly important to understand.
Louise Burke, Managing Director of the ODI, said:
“The ODI chose to work with the NASUWT because we both recognise that there is currently not a clear enough picture of what is happening in schools. Without more data and a variety of datasets, no one knows the full extent of the problems currently being faced by teachers, pupils and parents, and what that means as we come out of lockdown. Better data infrastructure would create a much-needed early warning system, helping policy-makers and those providing support to teachers to see the full impact of the pandemic and who most needs help.”
The report found that during the partial school closures of 2020-21, about 50% of all teachers took on a dual role, providing classroom as well as remote teaching. Primary school teachers were particularly likely to have taken on this dual role, probably because of their role in providing day care for the children of key workers and vulnerable children.
Over 60% of teachers felt that their workload had increased over the past 12 months and the average hours of work for full-time teachers was just over 52 per week. Despite this, a smaller proportion of teachers said they were planning to leave the profession than in the previous two years, and indicators suggest that this was related to more professional autonomy during the pandemic.
Teachers’ estimate of learning losses indicated that these are likely to be substantial in all groups of children, but there was particular concern from primary school teachers, and teachers from schools in more deprived postcodes. A lack of support from a parent or other adult was the most commonly identified factor associated with poor engagement with online learning. Learning loss is linked to a number of social and economic measures at the school postcode level.
Find out more and read the report in full. An interactive tool is also available.