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ABSS teachers generally happy to teach here


Academic impact of Covid shutdown very obvious to teachers: students are behind where they should be

A majority of Alamance-Burlington school system teachers say their school is a good place to work (81.85 percent) and most (82.80 percent) say they plan to continue teaching for ABSS, according to the results from the state’s 2022 Teacher Working Conditions Survey.

A total of 1,678 ABSS educators, including teachers, principals, assistant principals, and other licensed educators, participated in the 2022 survey, according to the state Department of Public Instruction (DPI).

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The 20-minute online survey included dozens of questions on 10 different topics: use of time; community support and involvement; facilities and resources; managing student conduct; teacher leadership; school leadership; professional development; instructional practices and support; equity; and safety.

In releasing the results from the latest biennial survey last Wednesday, DPI highlighted that 85 percent of the state’s public school teachers say their school “is a good place to work and learn.”

One consistent concern among ABSS educators – and their counterparts across the state – appears to be the impact on student learning from the statewide school shutdown. Schools were closed for most ABSS students from mid-March 2020 until late March 2021, and most received their instruction online during that time due to the pandemic.

Of the 1,510 ABSS teachers who responded to four new questions regarding the “pandemic impact,” 39.87 percent estimated that their students’ academic progress is a year behind where it would be at the same point during a “typical school year,” the survey reveals (see accompanying chart).

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Of the 1,510 ABSS teachers who responded to the question about the pandemic’s impact on student progress, 37.62 percent estimated that their students are three to six months behind where they would be at the same point in a typical school year.

In contrast, 19.6 percent of ABSS teachers estimated that their students’ progress is the same as it would be during a typical school year. Another 1.79 percent of ABSS teachers said their students are three to six months ahead; and 1.13 percent estimated that their students’ academic progress is a year ahead.

Of the 1,510 ABSS teachers who responded to the “pandemic impact” section of this year’s survey, 55.77 percent estimated that they had spent 50 percent or more of the 2021-22 school year re-teaching material from previous grades/school years (see chart above).

Though school safety has historically been a top concern for ABSS teachers, a majority of the 1,678 respondents to the 2022 survey say that rules of student conduct are consistently enforced (62.41 percent); efforts to maintain discipline are supported (73.69 percent); and they believe they work in a safe environment (81.68 percent).

The anonymous survey was administered throughout the month of March 2022 by DPI and the Illinois-based Academic Development Institute. More than 112,000 of North Carolina’s 122,000 licensed public school educators responded to this year’s survey.

The survey is designed and funded by the General Assembly and intended to assess working conditions in the state’s public schools.

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