New Report from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Reveals Educators Hungry for Professional Learning and Greater Family Engagement

BOSTON – Global learning company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) today announced the findings of the second annual Educator Confidence Report, which examines educator sentiment on a range of issues, including technology use in classrooms, professional learning opportunities, and overall comfort and familiarity with digital learning tools.

The Educator Confidence Report gives us a clear snapshot into the needs of K-12 teachers in the U.S. today,” said Rose Else-Mitchell, Executive Vice President of Professional Services at HMH. “This report shows that teachers’ appetite for technology in classrooms is matched by their desire for targeted solutions to support meaningful implementation of that technology to truly drive learning gains."

Key takeaways from the report include:

  • Deeper family engagement and professional learning top priorities for educators: 58% of educators reported a desire for more parent and family engagement while an overwhelming 84% spend their own money on professional development.
  • Educators are turning to social media to interact with their communities: Facebook was the most popular social media tool used by educators as a whole to communicate with families, although district administrators showed a slight preference for Twitter. 33% of teachers, 60% of school administrators and 67% of district administrators reported using Facebook, compared with 16%, 43% and 71% (respectively) who use Twitter.
  • Decrease in concerns about meeting standards and accountability requirements: Concern by educators about teacher accountability requirements dropped by 13 percentage points year-over-year (from 63% to 50%), while concern about meeting the requirements of Common Core/state standards assessments dropped 11 percentage points (from 58% to 47%).
  • State assessments being delivered digitally: Over one third of educators (39%) are administering end-of-year state assessments in a digital format; however, only half of respondents said they feel well-prepared to administer them in digital form.
  • Digital paradoxes revealed: Newer teachers (ten or fewer years of experience) use social media more often to engage with students than more experienced educators. More experienced teachers (11+ years), however, use other digital tools, such as digital white boards and online assessments, with greater frequency. With the exception of social media, there were no instances in the survey where newer teachers use a digital tool more often than those with more years in the classroom.

Although teachers with 10 or fewer years of experience are less frequent users of digital classroom tools, they report the most confidence when it comes to using technology resources in an instructionally effective way. This specific finding signals the importance of providing educators as a whole with the necessary supports to help guide them toward increased incorporation of digital tools for student instruction and engagement.

Else-Mitchell continued, “HMH partners with thousands of school districts across the US and this data aligns with what we hear from customers. It is critical that we listen to teachers, so we can provide them with the effective, collaborative and personalized professional learning opportunities they want."

The Educator Confidence Report is an independent survey that was conducted by the market research agency MDR on behalf of HMH. This was the second administration of the survey to a diverse national cross-section of 1,047 educators.

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About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (NASDAQ:HMHC) is a global learning company dedicated to changing people’s lives by fostering passionate, curious learners. As a leading provider of pre-K–12 education content, services, and cutting-edge technology solutions across a variety of media, HMH enables learning in a changing landscape. HMH is uniquely positioned to create engaging and effective educational content and experiences from early childhood to beyond the classroom. HMH serves more than 50 million students in over 150 countries worldwide, while its award-winning children's books, novels, non-fiction, and reference titles are enjoyed by readers throughout the world. For more information, visit www.hmhco.com.

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Media Contact
Jennifer Berlin
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
(617) 351-5270
Jennifer.Berlin@HMHCo.com