Intentions of early career teachers: should we stay or should we go now?

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Schaefer, Lee
Hennig, Lauren
Clandinin, Jean
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2020
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Abstract

Early career teachers continue to flee the profession in many countries around the world. In a series of our own studies, we have attempted to better understand the intentions of early career teachers. In this paper, we build on themes that emerged in a 2015 study, published in Teaching Education, with 40 second- and third-year teachers, and interviewed 15 more second- and third-year teachers from another Canadian province. Using a semi-structured interview procedure with a method of thematic analysis, the same 2015 themes emerged in the new study with the exception of two original themes: It’s the kids; and An opportunity for relief: Relational support. Both new themes highlighted relational aspects of sustainability and turned us to the notion of relational agency. We draw on the conception of relational agency to inquire into how early career teachers might establish a capacity to align their thoughts and actions with others on the professional knowledge landscape. We then pose questions surrounding how relational agency helps teacher educators, administrators, and teachers to think differently about how early career teachers might be sustained in teaching.

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Teaching Education

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Specialist studies in education

Social Sciences

Education & Educational Research

Beginning teacher

teacher attrition

teacher sustainability

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Schaefer, L; Hennig, L; Clandinin, J, Intentions of early career teachers: should we stay or should we go now?, Teaching Education, 2020

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