Recent research in Ireland has been developed in regards to identifying the cause of stress and job satisfaction in the teaching profession. Darmondy & Smyth (2010) a study on primary school teachers and Kerr et al.,(2011) a study on secondary school teachers both showed high levels of stress in teachers as a result of pupil behaviour, collegial relations and student/teacher relationship. Although it has been a noted limitation in international research (Klassen & Chiu, 2010) relevant research in Ireland has yet to be established determining teachers stress and job satisfaction relative to the socioeconomic designation of schools. Also as current research is specific to primary and post primary is was decided to analyse the differences in stress and job satisfaction in an attempt to investigate and compare the different teaching levels.
A quantitative questionnaire was used to collect data from one hundred and thirty nine participants (N=139). SPSS software to formulate a database enabling the investigation of differences of stress and job satisfaction in teachers of DEIS and Non DEIS schools and between primary and post primary.
Results revealed that there was differences in stress in DEIS and Non DEIS schools with highest stress levels being associated with teachers in Non DEIS schools. Findings showed that Non DEIS teacher believed their class sizes too big and workloads are too high. Teachers of DEIS schools had lower levels of stress but showed high levels of discipline and classroom management problems. There were significant findings in the differences of job satisfaction and stress between teaching levels. Post Primary had higher stress and lower levels of job satisfaction. This was again accounted to high workload and the difficulty of dealing with pupil’s rejection of authority. This research was an introduction to analysis of how socioeconomic factors are affecting Irish teachers. As evident from the high levels of stress and an insufficient satisfaction at work in DEIS and Non DEIS schools and across levels of primary and post primary, it is clear that further research could only benefit the teaching profession.