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The education system across the globe is under threat, as more and more teachers are choosing to leave their jobs. While low pay is predominantly to blame for their decision to quit, could an improvement in staff communication and safety tools be the answer to improving staff retention in schools?

A recent poll revealed that almost a third of primary school teachers in the UK are finding it difficult to afford everyday essentials as the cost-of-living soars. And, an article in Forbes said that while the average turnover rate for teachers in the US is about 16%, it is expected to soar anywhere from 25% to a whopping 54% of teachers who are considering leaving the profession entirely.

Despite the importance of their job, teaching and inspiring the next generation, primary school teachers earn between £25,714 and £42,624 in England and Wales. At the highest level, headteachers earn £47,735 to £125,098. While the average salary rate for a US-based teacher in the middle of their career is closer to $60,000 annually, many of these teachers are often paying for classroom supplies out of their own pockets.

Therefore, it is unsurprising that many teachers across the globe are struggling to make ends meet due to the soaring costs of gas and electricity, food, and gas.How to retain teachers? And, a recent poll in The Independent showed that many educators felt they were unable to do their job well due to these financial pressures.

All of this, combined with the stresses of an emotionally-draining job and a post-Pandemic world, is resulting in many teachers leaving the profession they worked so hard for, with the headteacher of Exeter Road Community Primary School Paul Gosling, witnessing this exodus first-hand.

“We’re losing teachers all the time because we’re so limited by our budget. We can’t pay many teachers here more than £10 an hour; at Tesco, they’d get £12 to £13. And so many end up quitting, often in tears, because even though they want to continue, they can’t afford to do so,” Mr. Gosling told iNews.

Although smartphone communications would not give teachers the increased salary many desperately need to ride out the cost-of-living crisis, it can make their working life easier and more efficient. If they can condense their tasks into a shorter amount of time, have communication at their fingertips that could reduce the administrative burden, and perhaps even take the place of some time-consuming meetings, their hourly rate will, at least, be higher, and they can have a better work-life balance.

And, teachers, as we all know, never get a chance to sit down. They are constantly on the move, whether standing up to teach, or walking between rooms or across entire campuses. This makes communication between staff members incredibly challenging, particularly if they need to say things that should be kept discrete.

That is why enterprise mobility solutions can support teaching staff, as it helps them stay connected wherever they are in the building, keep up to date with changes, and easily share information with each other. Plus, having constant access to information, student records, and UC (Unified Communications) tools to communicate with colleagues, students, and parents is also helpful in streamlining the teaching workflow.

Additionally, enterprise smartphones can help keep staff safe when at school. Although nobody likes to think of school, college, or university as being dangerous places, the harsh reality is that not only can the day-to-day situations be dangerous due to heightened emotions in an academic setting, but unfortunately, school shootings have been on the rise. According to an NPR article, the US saw almost 30 school shootings from January through May of 2022.  And, Campus Safety Magazine suggests that every school should have an Active Shooter response plan. Therefore, having extra protection, in the form of a panic button, motion detectors, emergency assistance, and so on, like those available on the Spectralink Versity Family of enterprise smartphones, in the hands of teachers, administrators, and school staff alike could reassure lots of teachers they are being looked after, and therefore, valued, while at work, and give peace of mind on the job, helping to improve overall job satisfaction and ideally, job retention for this critical frontline workforce.

Find out more about smartphones for education here.

Contract Spectralink today to learn more about how mobile technology can help in education environments, improving employee satisfaction, communication, and safety on the job.

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