Thousands of schools are closed on Wednesday because teachers were on strike for a higher salary and a lower workload. The teachers take action in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Enschede, Zwolle, Almere, Eindhoven and Goes, among others. Three teachers about the problems they encounter in practice.
Gertie Piening is a teacher of group 2 at a school in Valthermond in Drenthe. She notices the consequences of the shortage of teachers, especially when a colleague is sick.
"The workload is as high as there is a sick person. There is no substitute and we have to divide the group over other classes. Toddlers are often sent home. We want young people to follow the training so that we can new colleagues. "
"Those young colleagues must have a good income that they can live on. They must be valued. I have been in education for 36 years and I do not miss that appreciation, but I can imagine that it is not for young people."
"In addition, the workload is also increasing due to the complex problems that you encounter with children. I think that this has become larger. Appropriate education has brought in a lot of care, which means that you have to spend a lot of care on children. thirty children are approaching, I feel that I cannot serve all children. "
"I will continue for at least another four years, but I am worried about my follow-up. Given the teacher deficit figures, I think that will be a major problem."
178Teachers were on strike at Dam Square: "I'm not standing here for more salary"
Kleis Lageveen, physics teacher at a secondary school in Beilen (Drenthe), is also noticing the increasing workload. "More and more comes on the teacher's plate."
"The classes are also getting bigger in secondary education. In addition, appropriate education does not really work. More and more children with a disability such as autism or Asperger are coming into the regular classes. It is hard on all sides."
"In the past, those children were in a separate class, with extra supervision. But that has all been cut down. It is not one, there are four or five per class. That is quite a lot, but they are all entitled to extra attention. "
"Because those children also have medical supervision, the medical world wants a report to be able to follow that properly. That is not once every six months, but weekly. It all accumulates."
"I am 62 years old and I have decided that I am going to make it to the end, I just want that. But every year I see colleagues my age stop. Because they have burned out. I notice that the battery is drained very quickly. You have to charge on the weekend or during holidays. But I will continue. I just want that. "
Among others at the Dam in Amsterdam was a manifestation of teachers. (Photo: Pro Shots)
Gera Steentjes is a part-time teacher in special education in Groningen. She also notices the effects of the teacher shortage every week. "If I wanted, I could easily work full time."
"I am most concerned about the teacher shortage. Why is it such an unattractive profession? We don't have a pond of substitute forces that we can draw on. The pool of reserves is empty."
"Almost every week I get the question if I can come in. I work three days at school, but also at home, because otherwise the work won't come to an end. Raid takes a lot of energy. The students don't know me and I don't know them. Then you go to the weekend, exhausted, and you stand in front of your own group on Monday. "
"So teachers need to be added, because it is a nice job. What could be better than having a lot of expectant faces in front of you, eagerly looking up at you: do something with us. If that works out, is that great?"
See also: Thousands of schools closed due to strike, protests throughout the Netherlands