In a NU.nl survey, 1 in 5 primary schools said they currently have at least one vacancy for a teacher. Despite the six-week summer vacation, many school principals were unable to fill their vacancies before the start of the new school year.
NU.nl has asked all primary schools in the Netherlands whether they still have vacancies for teachers - while the school year has not yet started in the Central region.
Almost 20 percent of the respondents said they were still looking for a teacher. 1,156 primary schools participated in the study.
Part-timers spend more hours in front of the class, classes are larger
Schools that do not have enough teachers often have to come up with emergency solutions in order to get someone into the classroom. In most cases this means that a teacher with a part-time contract will work more hours.
NU.nl research also shows that 13 percent of schools that still have a vacancy make up for the shortage of teachers by making the classes larger. In addition, in a number of schools an appeal is made to a teacher who was actually already retired or would retire.
Many schools expect difficult to fill vacancies
Of the schools that indicated that they currently have no vacancies, 80 percent expect to have vacancies that are difficult to fill during the coming school year.
Schools in particular expect to be difficult to fill in temporary vacancies due to pregnancy or illness. Several schools write that finding invaders has become "impossible".
PO Council: Teacher shortage is increasing
According to forecasts commissioned by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, the shortage of primary school teachers will continue to grow in the coming years. The PO Council agrees. According to spokesperson Ad Veen, many teachers will retire again in the coming years. "Our fear is that the teacher shortage will have an effect on the quality of education. We are already seeing this happening gradually."
"The quality does not diminish because the teachers who are now in front of the class would give less good lessons. This is due to fuller classes, because classes often change teachers and because sometimes someone is forced to stand in front of the class without the right education."
- 19 percent of primary schools in the Netherlands participated in the questionnaire survey. It concerns 1,156 schools. Schools in the Central region are somewhat under-represented in the results. This is most likely due to the fact that the period during which the questionnaire was completed for this region fell entirely into the summer holidays. The questionnaire was reduced between 20 and 29 August.
- The conclusions of the NU.nl research are in line with previous research by DUO Educational Research. Before the summer vacation, DUO Educational Research found that all primary schools together were still short of 3,500 teachers.