Half of all school principals in Flanders show symptoms of burnout, Education Minister Hilde Crevits said on Thursday in answer to queries in the Flemish Parliament. The results come from a University of Ghent study on stress and well-being conducted among 67 primary and secondary school principals.
“The study shows that the satisfaction and enthusiasm of the principals is OK, but that many experience stress and burnout,” the Minister said. She stressed that certain factors could be sources of both stress and well-being at work, such as relations with teachers, students and parents, teaching challenges and innovations.
Wage disparities among principals can also be a source of frustration.
The Government has agreed to harmonize the salaries of all primary school principals, to exempt the principals of schools with over 100 pupils from teaching classes, and to reduce by four hours, the teaching hours of principals whose schools have fewer than 100 pupils.
The Minister said she would organize a roundtable to discuss the results of the study with a view to developing an action plan under the next government.