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Schools react to teacher burnout – but could that cost our economy?

NORFOLK, Virginia (WAVY) – Several local school districts are making changes to support teachers’ mental health. This also includes adapting the timetable to give you undisturbed time to plan your lesson.

Norfolk Public Schools is the newest division that adds extra days off and pay for those who represented in other teachers’ classes during their planning time.

Some argue that it is still not enough.

“I’m not going to come to this TV station and say that this solves everything … It doesn’t solve anything,” said Norfolk Federation of Teachers President Thomas Calhoun.

Calhoun said it was a nice gesture, but the school system remains under teachers, teacher assistants, substitutes and bus drivers.

RELATED: Virginia Beach Schools Release 2 hours early on select Wednesdays to help curb teacher burnout

“When they come back after their day off … we’ll still run out of everyone I just told you,” he said.

The schools’ good intentions can also have unintended consequences for the Hampton Roads economy.

Portsmouth, Suffolk, Hampton and Virginia Beach The schools have also adjusted their calendars. Isle of Wight and Newport News think about change.

Old Dominion University economics professor Bob McNab said this could exacerbate Hampton Roads employment problems.

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“We have seen women leave the labor force in greater numbers and inactive than men, and that could only make the situation worse,” said McNab.

If the children do not go to school, many parents are forced to find and pay for an additional day care center. There is also a lack of caregivers.

So, McNab said, some families might decide that it is better for mothers to stay home.

“In a technical sense, damn if you do, damn if you don’t,” he said.

Neither McNab nor Calhoun could come up with a solution, but they both told us they hope things get back to normal soon in the interests of everyone’s mental and financial health.

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