A 20% drop in the number of teachers being produced in North Carolina can be directly related to a lack of real investment into teacher pay by lawmakers in Raleigh. The most recent and rejected pay plan gave hard-working educators a paltry pay increase with some outrageous political strings attached.
Our legislators need to address this teacher shortage crisis with real pay increases that respect educators and motivate young peope to become new teachers.
State Board of Education members also expressed concern about a 20% drop in the number of teachers being produced by colleges of education in North Carolina from 2015 to 2018.
“That strikes me as systematically concerning,” said State Board Vice Chairman Alan Duncan. “That’s a very serious issue if we continue to drop at 20% every four years or roughly 5% a year on average.”
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Tomerblin acknowledged it is a concern and said North Carolina has seen a shift in where teachers come from. North Carolina colleges of education used to produce about a third of the state’s teachers, but now only produce about a quarter of them. More teachers are coming from alternative pathways, such as lateral entry, which allows people to begin teaching right away while trying to get a professional educator’s license.
An issue with this shift, Tomberlin explained, is that teachers who come from colleges of education in North Carolina “are by in large more effective than either out-of-state teachers or alternatively prepared teachers.” On average, about 70% of teachers trained by North Carolina colleges of education are still teaching after five years while only 50% of lateral entry and out-of-state teachers are doing the same, according to Tomberlin.
“It’s a serious issue,” he said.
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