“Everyone is tired”, the professional burnout of CCSD teachers leads to a trend of staff absences
LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – Teachers and staff at the Clark County School District are burnt out, resulting in high Friday no-shows and, with a lack of replacements, leaving other staff to pick up the pieces. , a review by the 8 News Now I-Team found.
The I-Team reviewed staff absences from the 5-day break in January. The school closures were intended to combat both coronavirus and fatigue. As part of their union contract, teachers earn 15 sick days per school year. The days can roll on into the next year and beyond.
8 News Now previously spoke to a teacher who retired after 31 years and had earned more than 300 unused sick days, but according to the school district and union-brokered deal, only 100 of those days were earned. been paid. Teachers said the district is offering $5 per unused day at retirement.
From mid-January to mid-May, more than 11% of CCSD employees were absent on average on Fridays. The next day with the most staff absences is Monday with nearly 9% of staff absent on average.
The data provided by the CCSD is broken down into sick leave, personal leave, vacation and other categories. Most leaves consist of regular sick leave, according to the data.
On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, more than 7% of staff were absent on average.
“It’s really hard to be in a classroom right now,” one teacher who did not want to be identified told I-Team. Many teachers said they did not want to speak on camera about the issue due to retaliation.
“It’s really hard right now, it really is,” the teacher said, citing the transition to classroom learning and as the CCSD looks for an influx of violence between students and teachers. “We have a lot of support from our admin, they’re great, it’s just a lot of pressure. It’s really hard to get things done.”
“Are there staff who usually go out on Mondays and Fridays? I-Team’s David Charns asked the teacher.
“I just know there are a lot of people outside,” the professor replied.
Adding to the problem, covering other teachers’ classrooms means that time is taken up to do the things that teachers are obligated to do: things like lesson planning, grading, and data entry. Staff are paid when covering a colleague’s shift.
“Half an hour after school until our contract time isn’t enough for us all to sit together and do what we’re supposed to do,” the teacher said.
Nevada only requires a high school diploma for substitute teachers. Last year, the CCSD Board of Directors increased the salary of replacements from $90 to $110 per day.
On average, about a third of staff are covered when they are absent, sick or not.
“Not having teachers in the classroom obviously affects the kids, but like I said, my kids’ school didn’t start with full staff this year,” said Brittney Davis, a parent of the SDCC.
Davis doesn’t blame teachers for having to take time off, especially if they’re sick, adding that many employees can now see a doctor as teacher health insurance issues are resolved. Doctors dropped out of the Teacher Health Trust following complaints that health insurance was not paying the bills.
“They just don’t have the staff to cover things, so teachers are stressed out with the extra work they have to do, on top of all the extra demands from the school district,” Davis said.
Nine of the top 10 days with the most absent staff were Fridays. One in 10 employees was out of the building on Friday, with the majority calling in sick. On April 29, the day with the highest number of employees absent during the 4-month period examined, almost 15% were absent.
To compare, the first 10 days with the most staff at work were mainly Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
“Are they burnt? 8 News Now John Langeler asked CCSD Superintendent Dr. Jesus Jara during a recent interview on “Politics Now.”
“Absolutely they are tired, everyone is tired,” Jara said. “If the teachers are tired, our children will be tired, our staff will be tired, right? It’s, how can we then remove some of these lingering things to help them stay focused on their students? »
Jara said his team is working to reduce vacancies and absences, citing bonuses for retention and recruitment. Today, at the end of the school year, the level of professional burnout is real and the work has piled up.
“Whether it’s a Monday or Friday or any day of the week, it just takes that time away from us,” the unidentified teacher said.
A 2019 report, before the coronavirus pandemic, found that out of 5,000 school districts, “Fridays tend to have higher absentee rates and lower fill rates.” The “National Report on Employee Absences and Alternates” found that the average fill rate, the percentage of employees covered during absences, was twice the percentage at CCDS.
A U.S. Labor of Bureau Statistics report found that the median number of reported sick days for a private sector worker was 15 compared to 125 for a state or government employee.
Many teachers who messaged the I-Team in preparation for this report said they could use their sick time as they wished and that the district needed to do more to hire replacements and staff.