The international project TALIS is the first international survey interviewing teachers and school principals from 34 countries and economics about the school climate, course of the learning process and work conditions of teachers and principals. The main data collection took place in the Czech Republic from 5 March to 5 May 2013 at 220 schools on the ISCED 2 level. The principals thereof and in total 3 219 selected teachers participated in the survey.
At the end of May 2013, the data files were transferred to the international centre. The results of TALIS 2013 survey were published on 25 June 2014.
Czech school principals devoted on average one half of their working hours to administrative and leadership tasks and meetings (compared to 41 % within the international average). Moreover, 94 % of school principals stated that they checked for mistakes and errors in school administrative procedures and reports often or very often. It presents an above-average and at the same time the highest proportion within the international comparison.
Teachers in the Czech Republic fall behind the international average in terms of an extent to which: they integrate work of students in small groups to come up with a joint solution to a problem or task; they engage students in project work that require at least one week to complete; and they give different work to the students who have learning difficulties and/or to those who can advance faster. At the same time within the international survey teachers in the Czech Republic showed the second lowest level of self-efficacy and they are far behind the international average particularly in self-efficacy in implementing alternative instructional strategies in their classrooms and in student engagement.
However, regarding the needs in the professional development, the teachers in the Czech Republic consider the education focused on deepening their knowledge and understanding of subject fields they teach as needed (45% have opted for “high level of need” or “moderate level of need”). The also consider as needed the education in the area of approaches to individualised learning (34%) and in the area of pedagogical competencies in teaching their subject fields (35%). At the same time, the professional development activities in the area of pedagogical competences to teach particular subjects, of student evaluation and assessment practice as well as the knowledge of the curriculum and approaches to individualised learning are attended by teachers in the international average significantly more often than in the Czech Republic. In general, the Czech Republic shows in comparison with the other countries in all the monitored areas of professional development – except the areas of student behaviour and classroom management and knowledge and understanding of their subject fields – below-average share of the teachers, who feel their further education as highly needed. The TALIS results also show that the teachers (not only) in the Czech Republic, who have already participated in a professional development course, feel more urgently a need of further education than the teachers who have not participated at such form of education. Insufficient level of incentives and collision with work schedule together with insufficient financial support are among the main obstacles to the participation in professional development reported by both teachers and principals.
Teachers in the Czech Republic participate in pedagogical conferences and in a network of teachers formed specifically for the professional development of teachers significantly less often than is the international average. They conduct also less often an individual or collaborative research on a topic of their professional interest. Similarly, reserves have been identified in the CR regarding the participation of school principals in professional networks, mentoring or research activity (the share of the principals participating within the period of the 12 months preceding the data collection was 28% in the CR compared to the international average of 51%). Teachers in the CR also fall behind the international average in the extent of teaching jointly as a team in the same class. In the other forms of cooperation, however, teachers in the CR are a bit more active.
In total, 62% of teachers in the CR (compare to the international average of 34 %) work at schools where there is no access to a formal induction programme for new teachers. For induction of new teachers, rather informal methods are used in the CR. A practice of mentoring is also rather unusual, only 4% of the CR teachers compared to the international average of 13% have their own mentors assigned to support them, and 8% of the CR teachers (compared to the international average of 14%) serve as mentors.
More than one half of the teachers in the Czech Republic stated a positive impact of the feedback on the teaching practices and on the classroom management practices (but both shares are higher in the international average). Nevertheless, nearly one half of the teachers in the CR (49%) consider the evaluation of teachers and the feedback as having only little impact upon the way teachers teach in the classroom (43% in the international average). The impact of the feedback onto the amount of professional development teachers undertake mentioned 30% of the teachers and the impact on the likelihood of teachers´ career advancement 22%, which means significantly below-average proportions. At the same time, one third of the teachers in CR consider teacher appraisal and feedback as an activity that is largely done to fulfil administrative requirements. This seemingly high proportion is in fact the second smallest one among the participating countries. At the same time, a strong positive connection between teacher job satisfaction and the opinion that the appraisal and feedback have impact upon the way teachers teach in the classroom – and is not largely performed to fulfil administrative requirements - was found in the CR (this relation occurred to a certain extent nearly in all the countries participating in the survey).
It is possible to conclude from the average results of all the countries involved in the TALIS 2013 survey that the most of the teachers do not think that teaching profession is valued in society (69%) while the teachers in the CR are even more sceptical (88%). The share of 22% of teachers in the international average strongly agree that the advantages of being a teacher clearly outweigh the disadvantages, compared to 5% in the CR, and in general 77% of the teachers in the international average agree with this statement in comparison with only 53% in the CR. In this respect, the CR recorded the lowest share of agreement among all the countries. However, the vast majority of the teachers in the international average as well as in the CR are – according to their statements - satisfied with their current work environment.
The national coordinator of the TALIS 2013 survey was Ms. Vendula Kašparová.