As Teacher Appreciation Week comes to a close, the University of Phoenix College of Education surveyed 1,000 full-time K-12 teachers to ask about their experiences.

Here is what the survey found

On why they teach:

  • Wanted to make a difference in children’s lives: 73 percent
  • Enjoy working with children: 72 percent
  • Was inspired by a teacher when I was a student: 49 percent
  • Wanted to inspired change in education: 34 percent

On their frustrations:

  • The focus on standardized testing: 69 percent
  • Students’ lack of respect for authority: 63 percent
  • Lack of parent involvement in the classroom: 47 percent
  • Class sizes being too big: 47 percent
  • The significant gap between student achievement levels: 47 percent
  • The difficulty in disciplining children: 43 percent

 On how much parents are involved:

  • Want parents involved in their classrooms: 97 percent
  • Teachers who say less than half of parents are involved in their classrooms: 76 percent
  • Teachers who say 75 to 100 percent of the parents are involved in the classroom: 8 percent

On how they’d like parents to get involved:

  • Regularly communicate: 71 percent
  • Not wait until there is an issue to connect: 67 percent
  • Ask about how their child can improve: 66 percent
  • Donate supplies: 47 percent
  • Visit the classroom: 38 percent
  • Volunteer in the classroom: 35 percent

While Friday marks the end of Teacher Appreciation Week, it’s never too late to say thank you with a simple note, card or letter. Other suggestions include using social media to thank your child’s teacher publicly and highlight what they have done throughout the year; buy a book to add to the classroom library that is reflective of the teacher and the impact he or she has on students; offer to help reorganize materials and supplies throughout the year; volunteer in class, and ask how you can contribute.

Contact reporter Alexis Huicochea at or 573-4175. On Twitter @AlexisHuicochea​

Education writer for #ThisIsTucson. Mom of one.