Britain faces a teaching crisis as four in 10 teachers expect to leave their jobs and move out of education by 2024, a survey has found.
More than half (62%) of those who see themselves quitting blamed workload while 40% put it on a lack of accountability.
The National Education Union (NEU), which surveyed 8,674 of its members in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, said it shows a “culture of fear” in schools.
Despite regular government recruitment drives, those new to the profession were more likely to leave.
More than a quarter (26%) with between two and five years’ experience intend to quit education in the next five years and 15% of those with fewer than two years’ experience.
While 40% of educators polled said they would be out of teaching by 2024, 18% expect to be gone within two years.
One teacher said: “Despite working part-time, I have come to realise that a job in education is not conducive to family life.”
Another commented: “Working 70 hours a week for many years has meant my health and family life have suffered. I am getting out before the job kills me.”
“My job is no longer about children. It’s about a 60-hour week with pressure to push children’s data through,” said a third unnamed respondent.
The picture of a stressed-out workforce struggling to find enough time for a private life was reinforced when teachers were asked about their work-life balance.
More than half of those in the survey (56%) said it had got worse, 31% said it had stayed the same and just 12% said it had got better or much better.
Fifty-eight percent said a lack of balance caused them stress.
Other factors driving up stress levels included the amount of work expected of them, which 72% blamed, and external accountability, pinpointed by 51%.
As for ways to improve matters in the next 12 months, answers included “less assessment for pupils, it creates too much pressure on pupils and creates too much marking for teaching.
Another teacher wanted trust given back to the teachers, also calling for “less paper pushing and more focus on the children. Less emphasis on SATs results.”
The survey findings were released ahead of the NEU’s annual conference in Liverpool debating a motion on teacher workload on Tuesday.
Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the NEU, said: “It is clear from our survey that the government is doing a far better job of driving teachers out of the profession than they are solving the issue of excessive workload.
A Department for Education spokeswoman said: “The education secretary has set out his determination to help teachers and school leaders reduce their workload and we have taken a range of actions to do this.
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