Are schools doing enough? An exploration of how primary schools in England support the well-being of their teachers

William Cotson*, Lisa Kim

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Though teacher wellbeing has been decreasing over time, there is an identified lack of awareness in schools across England in how settings can support teacher wellbeing. To address this gap, this study provides teachers with a space to share their conceptualisations of wellbeing, evaluate current school-level teacher wellbeing provisions, and provide recommendations for ways that existing teacher wellbeing support could be enhanced.
Semi-structured interviews and focus groups were conducted with sixteen primary school teachers across England. Reflexive thematic analytic findings indicated that participants’ defined wellbeing in relation to their unique contexts, and cited some current school practices, including school and academy-wide support and social support, as being effective for teacher wellbeing. However, participants emphasised that they perceived current teacher wellbeing provisions as tokenistic, which was suggested to be accentuated by poor understandings of teacher wellbeing and pressures from the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) and COVID-19. To address these issues, participants outlined the need for improvements in communication, the attitudes and approaches of Senior Leadership Teams towards teacher wellbeing, increased provisions to both manage and decrease workload, and increasing the amount of time that they have to meet expectations. Implications for policy and practice to enhance teacher wellbeing are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalPsychology in the Schools
Early online date2 Sept 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Sept 2023


  • teacher wellbeing
  • teacher mental health
  • Senior Leadership Team
  • primary school
  • reflexive thematic analysis
  • England

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