One in three teachers ‘unsupported’ with online learning – YouGov survey

According to the survey, teachers over the age of 55 report feeling the most unable to access training and support

Nearly one in three teachers do not feel supported to implement online learning in the classroom, a new survey by YouGov suggests – with teachers over the age of 55 most likely to feel they cannot access enough digital training.

The results of the YouGov survey of 1,000 UK primary and secondary teachers were published as part of a Microsoft Education report, entitled The Acceleration of Hybrid Learning, which was published yesterday.

The survey suggests that 67% of teachers feel supported in the classroom to implement online teaching, but a sizeable minority (30%) report the opposite; the figures worsen in the primary sector where nearly half (46%) of teachers confess to feeling under-supported.

Nearly half (47%) feel they can’t access adequate training resources, compared to 51% who feel that they can; the number who feel they can’t access enough training rises to 52% of teachers over the age of 55.

According to the YouGov research, 40% of teachers had not used online or digital learning platforms at the school they work for; a figure which rises to 54% for primary school teachers surveyed.

The survey suggests that 88% of teachers believe the pandemic has accelerated hybrid learning and 74% believe online and digital learning platforms are critical to primary and secondary education in the future. Nearly nine in 10 teachers (88%) believe the biggest benefit of hybrid learning is the opportunity to support students’ learning at a distance, the survey implies. Latest figures from the National Education Union suggest that as many as 94% of schools have pupils who have had to stay at home so far this term due to suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Other benefits of hybrid learning frequently cited by the teachers surveyed include the opportunity for self-directed learning (57%), flexible working for teachers and students (52%) and upskilling students for the real world (47%).

Despite the willingness of teachers to see the benefits of online learning, the survey suggests that 46% of teachers surveyed online feel that a hybrid learning model would make their jobs harder, compared to 31% who feel it would make their jobs easier. The government’s edtech strategy –­ published in April 2019 – identified increasing training opportunities for teachers and reducing teachers marking workload as two of the four strands for its work in this policy area.

According to the survey, more than seven in 10 (71%) teachers have concerns about fair access for students to technology and nearly seven in 10 (67%) have concerns about support for students with special educational needs and disabilities and vulnerable students.

Teachers other concerns are:

  • A lack of face-to-face time (65%)
  • Social and emotional development (53%)
  • Ability to teach effectively (51%)

Read more: One in five children under 12 admit to having bad online experiences in lockdown


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