Factors that promote teacher well-being in the physical environment: the context of a rural high school
Mabunda, Nzama Kenneth
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Although factors that affect teacher well-being are better understood, there is a lack of clarity on factors that bolster teacher well-being in rural schools. This study illustrates the factors that promote teacher well-being in a physical environment in a rural school in Limpopo province in South Africa. The research employed participatory action research within the emancipatory paradigm. Ten participants from a rural school in Limpopo gathered data by means of photovoice, using cameras, focus groups, observations, and individual interviews. We report on the first four of the six phases of participatory action research. Thematic analysis surfaced three main themes: safety; a conducive office environment with ergonomic furniture, resources, and thermal comfort; and environmental aesthetics and water availability. The factors that promote teacher well-being are based on the participants' affections, attitudes, and evaluations of their school's physical environment. These findings add empirical knowledge to the understanding of the factors that promote teacher well-being in a rural school context.