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Article

Teachers under stress during the COVID-19 pandemic: analysis of a successful case

Вестник МГПУ (Российская Федерация). 2021.
Petrakova A., Kanonire T., Куликова (Пономарева) А. А., Orel E.

This study investigated teachers’ experience of distant teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown in spring 2020, their perceived level of psychological stress and its associated factors and their coping strategies. The aim was to present a successful case of teachers organizing their work and maintaining their mental health under the pressure of the pandemic. To achieve this aim, a case study design was chosen, and interviews with five teachers from one of Berlin’s private bilingual Russian-German schools were conducted. The interviews included blocks of questions on a) the changing context of work and life, b) stress level self-assessment and coping strategies used, and c) teachers’ ideas about the future. Furthermore, the results of the interviews were generated through content analysis. The findings of the present case identified several supportive factors that decrease psychological stress: school administrative and technical support and the maintenance of workload at almost the same level as that before the transition to distant teaching. Other coping strategies that act as preventive factors supporting mental health were also identified: positive rethinking of the situation; seeking social support; and maintaining work-life balance through self-care, physical activities and hobbies. Implications of the present findings are provided.