June 17, 2022 | News

Morning headlines: Teachers under stress

Writer: Alexia Ridley, Jeff Dantre

Published June 17, 2022

The state’s teachers are burdened by testing, time demands and unrealistic expectations. Those are among the findings in a report released by the Georgia Department of Education’s Teacher Burnout Taskforce.

That task force grew out of a 2015 survey of more than 53,000 teachers with 67 percent saying they were unlikely or very unlikely to encourage high school graduates to pursue teaching.

Meetings of the task force were overseen by the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government, which also compiled the report.

Recommendations include:

  • Efforts to reduce testing time and preserve instructional time;

  • Giving teachers the time, support and resources to meet student needs;

  • Treating teachers as professionals and giving them a voice in the educational system;

  • Increased emphasis on teachers' mental health.

Unemployment remains low across Georgia

Georgia’s unemployment rate hit a new record low of 3% in May as more people entered the labor force and more workers found jobs.

The jobless rate ticked down from 3.1%, the previous all-time low, which was set in March and matched in April.

A year ago, 4.1% of Georgia workers were unemployed. The state’s rate has been falling or stable since it hit an all-time high of 12.3 percent in April 2020, early in the pandemic.

State buys 1100 acre tract of land for "manufacturing megasite"

The State of Georgia has purchased 1,100 acres southwest of Macon for a manufacturing megasite, which official say represents a shovel-ready tract of land with direct rail access to offer to heavy industry.

Leaders say the site could suit the electric vehicle industry adding to the state’s portfolio of projects like the Rivian plant in Morgan and Walton counties, the just announced Hyundai EV plant near Savannah and the SK Battery plant being developed in Jackson County.

Jackson EMC sees record power usage

Jackson EMC is among many electrical providers that are experiencing record usage. The company says customers reached 1,345 megawatts between 4 and 5 pm Wednesday.

That number breaks the previous record of 1,293 megawatts, set during a winter polar vortex in January 2014. The company says it didn’t have any problems meeting the demand and is prepared for higher periods.