It’s happening across the country at an alarming rate: teachers are leaving the profession. According to a survey by the American Federation of Teachers, 75 percent of pre-K to grade 12 teachers said teaching conditions have gotten worse over the past five years. A similar percentage of teachers said they wouldn’t recommend the teaching profession to a prospective new teacher. Other large surveys by the National Education Association and RAND had similar findings. On LinkedIn, a large community of users who are “open to work” celebrate with the hashtag #transitioningteacher when they are hired outside the classroom.
Teacher shortages have happened before, but this one feels different for many states and districts.
How does the teacher shortage look across the country?
While there were 3.5 million teachers in 2018 in traditional public and charter schools, there is no comprehensive national data about teacher turnover during or post-pandemic. To understand what’s happening at a national level, we can examine statistics from smaller surveys.
The pandemic changed the teaching landscape. RAND reported that nearly one in four teachers said that they were likely to leave their jobs by the end of the 2020–2021 school year. Black or African American teachers were particularly likely to plan to leave.
Dr. Richard Ingersoll, professor of education and expert on the country’s teachers, said in a conversation with Vox that “high-poverty, high-minority, urban, and rural public schools” have had among the highest rates of turnover. The implications of these trends are particularly alarming as they affect student outcomes; teachers are, of course, the heartbeat of nourishing learning environments, making a huge difference for kids.
This data is making school leaders urgently ask: what are the biggest reasons behind teachers walking out, and what can be done to support them so they stay?
Since the company’s inception in 2006, Charter School Capital has been committed to the success of charter schools. We help schools access, leverage, and sustain the resources charter schools need to thrive, allowing them to focus on what matters most – educating students. Our depth of experience working with charter school leaders and our knowledge of how to address charter school financial and operational needs have allowed us to provide over $1.8 billion in support of 600 charter schools that have educated over 1,027,000 students across the country. For more information on how we can support your charter school, contact us. We’d love to work with you!