Flanders has a shortage of teachers nowadays. It's something that has been going on for years, but now the shortage becomes very evident.
Lots of elementary schools and high schools don't find a replacement anymore for a teacher who's sick. And with the flu going around, lots of people need to stay home for at least a week.
I'm not surprised it has come to this. The profession of teacher is not very attractive anymore. You need to work longer to have a full time job and the young ones will get a lot less pension than we older ones got, thanks to the new pension rules of the present government. And the youngsters aren't the same too. They are well-aware of themselves and their rights (most forget about their duties). I don't say that's all wrong, but it takes another attitude from the teacher.
Now the minister of education announces they'll need to make the profession of teacher more attractive...
Well, let them start by making it easier to work. All the administration that has burdened the load could be reduced. Why is it necessary to keep a file on every pupil? When I started, this didn't exist and we also knew what was going on in our classes. And all those meetings with colleagues and headmaster. Teaching is a very straining job. Those who claim it's easy (you only work like 22 hours a week, and have lots of vacations - that's their mantra) should be put in a class and let them teach for a week or two. I bet most of them would run out of it after only a hour or so. You are not only a teacher, but also often a psychologist, a doctor or nurse, a parent, a friend. Gaining the trust of young ones can be difficult. This is where some younger teachers go wrong. They are way too familiar with their classes. I.m.o. it's wrong to let you address as 'Tina' or 'Leo' - they have to call you Mrs. or Mr. After all, you are the boss! And you have to let them know you have rules. They only can go so far. When they cross the line, they'll be punished.
Well, I wish our minister a lot of luck!