You asked

As statement has been made saying that there have been no more cases of Covid deaths or infections from "teachers" than from any other group or sector.

  1.  Are you able to confirm that this is true?

  2. Do you know what source was being quoted?

  3. Who would be considered a "teacher" within this statistic?

We said

​Thank you for your enquiry.

Please see below the data and analysis we hold regarding infections and deaths by occupation and how a teacher is defined. This is the full extent to which we are able to answer your request.

Infections by occupation:

In the dataset accompanying our bulletin published on 6 November 2020, you can find the percentage testing positive for COVID-19 by occupation - aged 22 and over (England), including those in teaching and keyworker occupations, from 2 September to 16 October 2020, on tab 1k. Our analysis shows no evidence of differences in the positivity rate between primary and secondary school teachers, other key workers and other professions for this period. Please note this analysis is unweighted.

Teaching assistants are included in the teacher category. Education support staff includes those who are not teachers but work in a school or university setting. If a teacher works in both primary and secondary education, they have been placed in the secondary school/6th form teacher category.

In response to questions around the aggregation of different occupations, we have reproduced this analysis with the teachers group combined which can be found in our statement here. When combining all teachers into one category, there is still no clear evidence of a difference in the level of individuals who would test positive for COVID-19 between teachers and other key workers.

Additionally, in the data set accompanying our November article, you can find the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 antibodies by occupation, England (weighted) from June 2020 to October 2020 on tab 1f.

We will be publishing updated occupation analysis with the latest data in one of our subsequent articles.

COVID-19 deaths by occupation:

Our latest publication and accompanying dataset showing COVID-19 deaths by occupation are available via the following links: COVID-19-related deaths by occupation in England and Wales publication and COVID-19-related deaths by occupation in England and Wales dataset.

Table 8 of the accompanying dataset provides the number of deaths involving COVID-19 and all causes by teaching and educational occupation groups (those aged 20 to 64 years) in England and Wales registered between 9 March and 28 December 2020. These are broken down into the following categories: higher education, further education, secondary education, primary education, special needs education, educational advisers and school inspectors, and other education professionals.

How we define a teacher death:

The main job is recorded based on the information stated by the informant when the death is registered.  This information was then coded using the Standard Occupational Classification 2010 (SOC 2010).

2.5 Teaching staff

Teaching staff are generally coded according to the type of educational establishments where they work.

  • 2311: Higher educational establishments (for example, university, law college, medical school)

  • 2312: Further educational establishments (for example, agricultural college, secretarial college, technical college)

  • 2314: Secondary schools (and middle schools deemed secondary schools)

  • 2315: Primary schools and nursery schools (and middle schools deemed primary schools)

  • 2316: Teachers of children, at different levels of education, who have special needs

  • 2319: Teachers of recreational subjects at evening institutes and similar establishments, and private tutors of music

  • 3563: Vocational and industrial trainers teaching occupational skills

Head teachers and principals of all types educational establishments are now coded to 2317.

This does not apply to assistant or deputy heads.

Further information can be found in SOC2020 Volume 2: the structure and coding index.