Want to Reduce the Teacher Shortage? Treat Teachers Like Professionals
By Tim Walker
All of a sudden everybody is talking about the teacher shortage, thanks in large part to a recent article in The New York Times that examined the desperate measures districts are taking – including dropping certification requirements – to fill vacancies. Too many pink slips were given out during the recession, the economy is improving, the teacher pool is dry, so we need to recruit, recruit, recruit. End of story? Not so fast, says Richard Ingersoll, professor of education and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. Ingersoll, who has been tracking the teacher profession for years, recently spoke with NEA Today about the nuances behind the teacher shortage narrative and why we need to turn the spotlight on keeping good teachers in the classroom.