Research Summary

Schooling in Australia has changed significantly in the past year. Lockdowns around the country saw schools shifting to online and remote learning - sometimes with only a few hours’ notice. Australia’s educators worked tirelessly to ensure students were supported and able to continue to learn while at home.

While many changes were enacted swiftly, it is inevitable that some of these shifts in schooling might remain in a post-pandemic world.

In 2019, researchers wanted to better understand perceptions of teachers and teaching in Australia. They surveyed 2,444 Australian educators and a nationally-representative sample of the public, finding a clear disconnect between how the public perceived teachers’ work and how teachers felt they were perceived by the public. While teachers felt under-appreciated and overworked, with 71% of teachers responding that the profession is unappreciated, public perceptions of teaching suggested that 82% of people felt the teaching profession was respected, and 93% of the public felt that the teaching profession was trusted.

Key findings:

  • Many people’s perceptions of teachers’ work improved as a result of COVID-19.
  • There is widespread recognition of the importance of ensuring all students have equitable access to technology that supports their learning.
  • There is perceived merit in a hybrid or more flexible approach to schooling.
  • Participants are more cautious about the idea of fully virtual schools in post-COVID-19 times.
  • Shifting to remote schooling during COVID-19 was successful in Australia.
Publication Details
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