The Impact Of The COVID-19 Recession On Teaching Positions

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  • 2022-10-31
  • 5 min read
impact of the covid-19 recession on teaching positions

Nearly no person, organisation, or industry escaped the pandemic’s unforeseen vengeance as it spread over the globe. Every industry either prepared to embrace the practices of a work-from-home culture or came to a halt. In addition to witnessing acts of solidarity and compassion, people also witnessed the expansion of oppressive structures. Many recession-proof jobs were affected. Even the supposedly recession-proof jobs in education weren’t immune from the effects.

There is a huge responsibility on teachers everywhere to continue educating the next generation. Teachers frequently go above and above for their students while the school is in lockdown. Teachers in West Bengal have reportedly taught kids in rural and tribal areas while seated under trees or in village community halls. Then there were rumours of a village teacher who would climb a Neem tree every morning to connect to the internet and carry out his duties. Marathi nursery rhymes were written by a teacher from Aurangabad to teach hygiene to young toddlers. People should not overlook how teachers have been treated unfairly throughout this pandemic, even though these stories may simultaneously warm and grieve our hearts.

Effect of COVID recession on the teaching profession

Some teachers suffer the brunt of fee reductions brought about by parent pressures on schools. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, teachers have reported being compelled to retire and being under pressure to accept reduced pay or unpaid leave. Some people spoke of having to make several difficult decisions as schools attempted to implement new policies to help them deal with the outbreak’s effects. When requested to take a longer unpaid leave of absence without a guarantee of employment upon their return, some instructors said they were left with no choice but to resign from their positions. Others claimed that just days before receiving their paychecks, they received notice of a salary reduction of up to 80%, with some of the reductions continuing for the foreseeable future.

1 . Loss in teaching jobs

One in four of the 1.5 billion pupils who were enrolled in private schools at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic had their education disrupted by school closures. The impact of COVID on the education sector has been tremendous and has brought about a recession in teaching.

It is difficult to guarantee that all students return to school. The World Bank predicted that COVID-19 would result in a 2% increase in the out-of-school rate in June 2020, though real figures may be higher given that economic growth hasn’t been as strong as anticipated. According to a 2021 poll conducted in Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan, 6% of boys and 4% of girls say they are unlikely to return to school. Schools are under severe financial strain as a result of the pandemic’s economic shock; instructors have reported losing their jobs, having their pay reduced, or not getting paid at all.

2 . Statistics from India

In Maharashtra, more than 60,000 teachers lost their employment, and in Karnataka, 40,000 teachers did as well. The only relief from the effects of overworking for those who kept their employment came in the form of compensation reductions or no salaries at all. As a result of their tireless battles for meagre pay, many teachers experienced mental health problems .

3 . Global Statistics

The salaries and general well-being of teachers in private schools have gone down significantly, which goes on to show the impact of COVID on the education sector. Private schools employ a sizable share of the teaching labour in some situations. More than one-fifth of the teaching workforce works in private schools in the Gambia, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, and Uganda. According to numerous reports, teachers have experienced a severe impact on their livelihood, mental health, and maybe their motivation to teach as a result of losing their employment, having their salaries reduced, or not being paid at all.

For instance, in Kenya, the majority of private school instructors were placed on unpaid leave when schools closed, while teacher salary was reduced by 20 to 50% in Mozambique, South Africa, and Zambia.

In Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gambia, India, Jordan, Liberia, Niger, Senegal, and Vietnam, private school teachers claimed they were not paid. When low-cost private schools in the Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Ghana, Senegal, Uganda, Zambia and Nigeria were surveyed, the results showed that  91% of schools stated their inability to pay any salaries to their teachers in 2020. Before COVID-19, private school teachers were already paid less than their public school counterparts and lacked job security and benefits, making them far more susceptible to shocks. Teachers who were impacted by this income shock have reacted by using savings, borrowing money, liquidating assets, and looking for alternative sources of income. As long as the school’s finances are under pressure, they won’t be able to sustain teacher salaries or the size of their personnel, which raises concerns about falling teacher welfare and a potential teacher shortage.

4 . Remote Teaching in COVID

While it is extremely important to adapt to the need of the hour, and most teachers had to switch to an online mode of teaching , this proved to be detrimental both for the students and the teachers. Since the national lockdown happened quickly, teachers were not sufficiently prepared to change their entire mode of teaching. Without sufficient access to digital tools (such as laptops and internet access) for teachers and their students, the primary focus of most teachers was to get learning materials out to as many students regularly as possible. Teachers who lacked the necessary digital skills were seen as an easy targets to lay off.


Historically teaching has been considered one of the recession-proof jobs. However, the impact of COVID-19 on the education sector has shown a massive recession in the education sector. The switch to remote teaching has not been easy , and its aftereffects can be felt to this date. For a community, firing teachers is a difficult and disheartening process. According to studies by Katharine Strunk, a scholar at Michigan State University who has researched education labour markets, layoffs frequently result in noticeably worse academic achievement. Therefore, it is extremely essential that the very base of our education sector is preserved, no matter how difficult the external circumstances are.

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Covid affected the whole education sector in many ways; around 250 million students were affected. Schools were shut down, and a new form of education came into existence, which is ‘online education’. Even today, many schools have shifted to a hybrid learning method where students can choose how they want to study.

Teachers said in the post-Covid times, students face serious challenges of learning losses, reduced academic skills, over-exposure, and dependence on the internet and gadgets. Some teachers are walking the extra mile for students to help them learn concepts easily and interestingly

The findings revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic caused stress, increasing anxiety and depression among the teachers. 34% of teachers were found to feel anxious and very anxious during the pandemic, while only 8% of teachers exhibited severe depressive

Teachers faced the most challenges during the pandemic while taking online classes, assignments, tests etc. A teacher was responsible for getting the studies going even during the pandemic. Many teachers were unaware of the technology and needed to learn how to take online classes; stress was also a major challenge in those times. But somehow, teachers managed to cope with these challenges and gave the educational sector a new face

Isolated teachers can experience burnout from the constant stress of trying to meet the demands of their students and job without support or guidance from colleagues. They may lack motivation and enthusiasm to be effective in their jobs, which can lead to reduced job satisfaction

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