State surveying teachers on working conditions

North Carolina's public school leaders want to know how to make teachers happy and how to improve learning environments across the state.

The state Department of Public Instruction is asking teachers to take a survey on their working conditions beginning Monday through April 20. Teachers can access the survey online at

State school board chairman Bill Harrison said North Carolina was the first state in the country to conduct a statewide survey of educators 10 years ago. Harrison said data from past surveys shows that positive working conditions improve student learning and teacher retention.

Teacher surveys have found that educators believe their biggest needs are time during the work day for planning lessons, adequate facilities and enough resources.

The 2010 teacher working conditions survey got a response rate of nearly 90 percent.