Scotland will not close the attainment gap between rich and poor kids with overworked, exhausted teachers, local MSP Jackie Baillie has said.

New research from teachers’ union EIS has shown that the average teacher works 46.5 hours per week -; an extra 33% on top of their contractual commitment.

The news comes after West Dunbartonshire Council revealed a rise in the number of teacher absences linked to stress. The number of teachers not at work because of stress increased by 58% last year and there are now 1234 working days lost due to the condition in West Dunbartonshire. It would appear that this problem is replicated across Scotland.

Jackie Baillie said that the SNP has failed to stand up for teachers since coming to power in 2007 with:

  • Teacher numbers at a 10 year low and 4000 fewer teachers in Scotland’s classrooms since the SNP came to power
  • The SNP’s 2007 manifesto promise to cut class sizes has been completely abandoned
  • The SNP Government is squeezing spending on education in Scotland harder than the Tories in England¬†

Jackie Baillie said:

“Increasingly, teachers are being asked to do more with less and working the equivalent of more than an extra day per week is simply unacceptable. It comes as no surprise that many local teachers are feeling stressed and overworked, and their concerns are echoed by colleagues in schools right across Scotland.

“In recent weeks the facts about the levels of inequality in Scotland’s schools have been highlighted. These new figures about the pressure placed on teachers should shock the SNP into action.¬† The SNP have squeezed funding on education in Scotland harder than the Tories have in England, they abandoned promises to cut class sizes and there are 4000 less teachers in our schools since the SNP came to power

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