PRESS RELEASE, 10 October
I-BEST 2023: INTERNATIONAL BAROMETER OF EDUCATION STAFF
The well-being of education staff is fundamental to the future of education. A milestone report launched today, World Mental Health Day, offers a comprehensive look at the health and well-being of education personnel worldwide. It highlights the widespread challenges education personnel face, from feeling undervalued to being overwhelmed, and underlines the urgent need to tackle these issues to ensure future of the teaching profession and thus guarantee the quality of education.
The 2023 edition of the International Barometer on Education Staff (I-BEST) offers a unique insight into the daily challenges of those educating the next generation. This second edition is particularly significant, as it encompasses an extensive survey conducted in 2023, involving more than 26,000 teachers and education support personnel from 11 territories across 4 continents.
Key questions explored the level of satisfaction with the working conditions such as physical environment of schools, the ability to make decisions within the educational setting, and the experiences with workplace recognition and support. The survey also examined their physical and mental health as well as the impact of digital tools.
Key Takeaways :
- Despite a diversity of realities and contexts worldwide, there is a concerning trend of education professionals feeling undervalued. This sentiment is exacerbated by an overwhelming workload, challenging work environments, a lack of recognition and limited career advancement opportunities.
- The report also found an alarming rise in the incidence of workplace violence, indicating a pressing need to establish supportive and respectful environments for education personnel worldwide.
- The poor state of psychological health is evident in many countries, as well as insufficient support systems, including occupational medicine, for education personnel across the globe. This highlights a critical need for a more uniform and comprehensive approach to addressing the health and well-being of education personnel.
- Despite these challenges, the majority of educators would choose their profession again, a true testament to the dedication, commitment, and passion of teachers to the profession they love and that the world needs.
Call to action
In light of these findings, David Edwards, General Secretary of Education International, highlighted the urgent need for action: “The environment and working conditions of teachers has a direct impact on the quality of education. When educators face overwhelming workloads, lack of recognition, experience psychological distress, and are not consulted about the tools they use, this impacts their ability to teach effectively and motivation to remain in the profession. Addressing these challenges is essential for the well-being of education personnel and pivotal for ensuring quality education for all.”
Edwards went on to say: “There’s an urgent need to design and implement policies focused on improving the health and well-being of our educators. Alongside our main partners, like the Education and Solidarity Network and others, we urge political actors in education, both national and global, to respect, value, and trust the pedagogical expertise of teachers and education personnel and to take action to address these critical issues.”
About the International Barometer of Education Staff (I-BEST):
Conducted biennially from 2021, I-BEST aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the health and well-being of education personnel globally, including teachers, school principals, and education support personnel. The study is a collaborative effort led by the Education and Solidarity Network, with partners such as Education International and the UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education.
About the Education and Solidarity Network (ESN)
The Education and Solidarity Network is an international association founded in 2009 with the conviction that education and health are interdependent and at the heart of all human development. The Network builds bridges between education, health, and social protection actors, in order to work towards the well-being of the educational communities around the world.
For I-BEST-related questions, please contact: email@example.com
 Japan, Morocco, Cameroon, France, Spain, United Kingdom, Switzerland (Cantons of Geneva and Vaud), French-speaking Belgium, Argentina, Quebec, Canada.