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No more apples, UK teachers not happy

More than half of newly qualified school teachers in Britain have considered quitting their jobs on health grounds, a survey by a leading mental health charity revealed yesterday.The study by the charity, Education Support Network, showed that in the past year, two in five newly qualified teachers have experienced mental health problems.The research discovered that teachers with less experience in the profession are more likely than experienced colleagues to suffer panic attacks, insomnia and mood swings than their colleagues.The Independent newspaper said yesterday that 40 percent of rookie teachers have experienced a mental health issue in the past 12 months, compared to 31 percent of all teachers.The charity has called for personal mental health and wellbeing training to be made statutory as part of the initial teacher training program.“Unless urgent action is taken over rising mental health issues, the retention and recruitment crisis in UK schools will worsen and children’s education will suffer,” the charity told the Independent.Education Support Network said high workload, poor student behavior, and mental health concerns are the most cited reasons for why these recently qualified teachers have considered quitting the profession.The charity said in the last 12 months, there has been a 35 percent increase in teachers calling its support helpline, with almost 8,700 cases managed through the helpline.One 24-year-old rookie teacher told the Independent that prior to becoming a teacher she was a happy graduate, full of enthusiasm, with no mental health issues.She said poor treatment she received from senior staff during her first few years in the classroom left her feeling undermined and bullied.The woman, who has now quit teaching, commented: “I had night terrors which left me exhausted. I would need to pull my car over to the side of the road to be sick before I arrived at school.”Julian Stanley, CEO of the Education Support Partnership, said: “Younger teachers can feel quite vulnerable.”