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Exploring organizational factors causing Teacher Attrition in Primary schools in the Netherlands : a multiple regression study

Gezel, Pim (2020) Exploring organizational factors causing Teacher Attrition in Primary schools in the Netherlands : a multiple regression study.

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Abstract:INTRODUCTION: Teacher shortage is an acknowledged problem in many countries. The shortage of teachers can be seen as a problem based due to the difference of supply and demand. In the Netherlands, the supply of teachers is a topic which gets a lot of attention, many policies are focused on increasing the supply of teachers. The demand however, gets less attention in overcoming the teacher shortage. A big factor causing increasing demand is the attrition of teachers. Attrition is defined as a teacher who quit their profession voluntarily during their career. Especially beginning teachers are prone to attrition, the numbers differ across the world, in the Netherlands however approximately 12% of the teachers quit their profession every year. GOAL: The goal of this study is to examine which organizational factors of schools cause greater teacher attrition. Many studies have focused on personal- and job characteristics which increase teacher attrition, however in the Netherlands there is only little empirical evidence about the organizational factors causing teacher attrition. The main research question of this study is therefore: Which organizational school characteristics explain teacher attrition in Dutch primary schools? METHODS: To answer this main question, a multiple regression analysis has been used. A sample of 1036 schools has been used to build a regression model. District characteristics, financial characteristics and school specific characteristics all have been used as independent variable to gain information about how they influence teacher attrition. This information has been retrieved from multiple sources such as the CBS, DUO and educational administrative offices. A regression model has been build using multiple estimation methods to examine the relationships between the variables. RESULTS: The analysis showed that seven variables had a significant relationship with teacher attrition. Especially school size, the percentage of immigrants in a district and the class size seemed to have a big influence on the dependent variable (p<.000). Other variables, such as student achievement or the denomination of the school did not show a relationship with teacher attrition. Overall, the explained variance of this model is 8% can be seen as small. CONCLUSION: School size and class size appeared to be the most influential factors concerning teacher attrition. Also, financial characteristics, district characteristics and school quality were explaining factors. These organizational variables however only explained a small portion. This could indicate that other factors suggested by literature, such as workload or stress, are more important in explaining teacher attrition. Future studies could therefore choose to combine organizational factors with more individual characteristics of teacher when trying to analyze teacher attrition. Besides this, future studies could also focus more on cohorts of new teachers. This could overcome several limitations of this study, such as time-lags in effects and teachers who return into the profession after a few years. This study implicates that reducing class size could effectively also reduce teacher attrition. Besides this, another implication is that school management should take into account the characteristics of their district when trying to retain teachers. Especially higher income districts, or districts with a higher percentage of immigrants are related to higher teacher attrition. More empirical research on this topic in the Netherlands is needed to help reducing the teacher shortage caused by teacher attrition.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Infotopics, Oldenzaal, Netherlands
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:70 social sciences in general, 81 education, teaching, 85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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