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Posts Tagged ‘shortage’

Rather Than Resisting Higher Expectations, Teachers Colleges Are Driving Them

The New York Times editorial “Help Teachers Before They Get to Class” (October 15) repeats outdated canards about teacher preparation that are as misguided as the new federal regulations celebrated in the editorial. Far from resisting higher expectations, teachers colleges are driving them.

Higher education institutions and states have raised program entry requirements in recent years, and the academic qualifications of admitted students have increased apace. By referencing an outdated and widely discredited report, the editorial misses this fact, reflected in publicly available federal datasets: today’s undergraduates preparing to be teachers have an average GPA of 3.2 on college work required for admission to the program.

National Forum Spotlights Teacher Shortages, Threats to Equity

Tampa, Florida, is short 1,000 teachers this year. Nine out of 10 low-income schools have staffing deficits in special education. Across the United States this year, classrooms are in need of 60,000 teachers, and the number could reach 100,000 by 2018. These are among the sobering statistics presented at a national policy forum I attended September 15, sponsored by the Learning Policy Institute (LPI).

The event, “Solving Teacher Shortages: Attracting and Retaining a Talented and Diverse Teaching Workforce,” presented the latest staffing and enrollment data and what they mean for education – ranging from fewer classes and larger class sizes to the hiring of underqualified teachers. Various high-profile speakers explained that shortages are driven largely by attrition of teachers for reasons such as lack of respect and autonomy, poor working conditions, and inadequate pay and administrative support.

Research: Teacher Shortages Are Real and Growing, But Evidence Recommends Solutions

Today, the Learning Policy Institute released a set of reports that present the latest data on U.S. teacher supply and demand and promote comprehensive recruitment and retention strategies to alleviate persistent shortages. AACTE commends the reports’ attention to the steep cost to students of understaffed schools, particularly in low–income communities, as well as the proposed solutions centered on high-quality clinical preparation of new teachers and reducing the attrition rate among practicing teachers.

School districts across the nation are struggling to staff classrooms with adequate numbers of skilled teachers, forcing them to make tough choices that shortchange students. Many educator preparation programs have stepped up recruitment and developed innovative partnerships with districts to meet local needs. Although these efforts are seeing some success, adjustments to the production end of the educator pipeline cannot compensate for the “leaky bucket” of practicing teachers who, according to the Learning Policy Institute, leave at a rate of nearly 8% per year.

Explore Roles for EPPs in Solving Teacher Shortages

Mark your calendar for a special webinar September 29 about key roles for educator preparation providers (EPPs) in solving the nation’s persistent teacher shortages.

Offered by AACTE in partnership with the Learning Policy Institute (LPI), the webinar will highlight the latest enrollment and staffing data and promising models for programs and policies to improve educator recruitment, preparation, and retention.

ACSR Issues State Policy Statements to Enhance Educator Preparation

The Advisory Council of State Representatives (ACSR) is pleased to announce a new consensus document, the State Policy Statements to Enhance Educator Preparation, developed by AACTE state chapter leaders and members to support the advocacy work of educator preparation providers (EPPs).

ACSR leaders representing more than 1,100 EPPs participated in a collaborative process to develop the document, agreeing on key statements under the following three priority areas:

UNLV Leadership Program for Educators Graduates First Class

This article originally appeared in the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) News Center and is reposted with permission.

UNLV
Urban Leadership Development graduates Diana Gomez, left, Dawn King and Benjamin Feinstein. (Josh Hawkins/UNLV Photo Services)

Diana Gomez always felt a pull toward a teaching career.

Even as a child, her heart was happiest when she was supervising her sisters’ and cousins’ cursive writing and math lessons, recess sessions, and lunch duty during games of “school.” She spent 5 years post-college exploring an accounting career, but the passion for her first love — education — remained.

Gomez returned to school to obtain her teaching credential, moved to Las Vegas because of vast job openings, and might have been content to teach first grade forever. But one fateful day, a mentor, whose “growing our own” mantra had encouraged Gomez to spend the last several years moving up the ranks, urged her to attend an informational meeting about the University of Nevada Las Vegas Urban Leadership Development (ULD) program.

ECS Explores Teacher Shortage Solutions

The Education Commission of the States (ECS), a national state policy organization that partners with education policy leaders including AACTE, has released six reports that provide guidance to state policy makers seeking to address teacher shortages.

An introductory report, Teacher Shortages: What We Know, examines the teacher labor market and highlights recent findings from state task forces that have addressed policies related to teacher shortages.

Five additional reports consider different state strategies to tackle shortages: alternative certification, financial incentives, induction and mentorship, evaluation and feedback, teacher leadership.

State Policy Recap – 2016 to Date

Ed Prep Matters is pleased to bring you this special feature on state policy and AACTE state chapter activity. For a summary of March’s state activity, see this article; February’s state activity is available here.

Overview of State Policy Activity

Thanks to AACTE’s State Policy Tracker, we can identify trends in state legislation and regulations related to educator preparation.

So far this year, approximately 300 state bills related to educator preparation have been introduced. Of these, 186 were related to certification and standards, and 18 have been enacted. Many of these laws are related to lowering certification standards for alternative-route programs, differentiated licensure standards for certain subjects including STEM fields and career and technical education (CTE), and allowing more pathways into teaching to alleviate shortages. Seven bills related to teacher certification and shortages have been signed into law in 2016 with themes such as expanding scholarships for teacher candidates and offering loan forgiveness for teachers. Five state bills have been signed into law related to teacher licensure standards.

Recruiting More Teachers for Rural Schools: What South Carolina Is Doing Right

It is no secret that South Carolina has faced many challenges related to education. Most recently, a shortage of teachers has been severely affecting the most vulnerable regions of South Carolina: our rural and poverty-stricken regions. In a state where most students live below the poverty level, there are some unsung heroes doing their best with the lowest of means, but we desperately need to improve our recruitment and retention of professional educators.

One way the state is supporting this goal is through Proviso 1A.73, also known as the Rural Teacher Recruiting Incentive. The FY16 budget allows for $1.5 million to be spent on this plan. The Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA) at Winthrop University along with the South Carolina Department of Education and the Education Oversight Committee has been charged with the responsibility to develop the initiative, and CERRA Executive Director Jane Turner submitted the plan for the first year in January 2016 with multiple components:

Nevada Teacher Shortages, Solutions Discussed at AACTE Press Briefing

In advance of the 68th Annual Meeting, AACTE held a press briefing last month at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, focused on educator preparation providers’ work to address the teacher shortages in Nevada. Panelists discussed the challenges they face and innovative solutions under way to meet the urgent demand for qualified teachers in the state’s two largest counties and in both rural and urban areas.

Presented by AACTE in partnership with member institutions in the state, the briefing featured an interactive panel discussion moderated by Mark LaCelle-Peterson, AACTE senior vice president for policy and programs, with the following panelists:

  • Kenneth Coll, Dean, College of Education, University of Nevada, Reno
  • Kim Metcalf, Dean, College of Education, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Dennis Potthoff, Dean, School of Education, Nevada State College
  • Thomas Reagan, Dean of Arts and Sciences, Great Basin College
  • Staci Vesneske, Former Chief Human Resources Officer, Clark County School District, on special assignment to the superintendent’s office

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