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HomeNewsBusinessTo address local teacher shortage, efforts include financial investments and new certification...

To address local teacher shortage, efforts include financial investments and new certification pathways

Justin Gluesing recalls remember instances in his hiring decisions as a school administrator when a teaching position would draw in dozens of resumes from interested candidates.

According to data from the October School Pulse Survey, 45% of public schools nationwide have at least one open position, and more than 50% of public schools said they felt understaffed in August as the 2022–23 school year was about to start.

The Alpena-Montmorency-Alcona Educational Service District’s Gluesing said, “I would have to schedule an afternoon to go over to Central Office and analyse the applications, just to restrict the list to a number that we could interview. “Now, if an application appears good when we receive it, we’ll do an interview.”

The shortages did not spare Northeast Michigan.

Due to a staffing deficit in October of last year, Alcona Community Schools were forced to close for almost a week.

Several teacher positions, in addition to numerous other staff opportunities, were available at Alpena Public Schools a few weeks prior to the start of the 2022–23 academic year.

There aren’t any simple solutions to the issue, but regional leaders like Gluesing are doing all they can to give educators and students in Northeast Michigan a strong foundation.

According to Gluesing, the teacher shortage is the most important issue affecting education in both Michigan and the entire country. “In my opinion, unless you have outstanding teachers in front of pupils, all other initiatives will fail or falter,” the author said.

Graduates with fresh teaching credentials in hand can dream of building relationships with young people and shaping their thoughts. However, the reality of the work are far harsher, and research suggests that during the past ten years, fewer people may have chosen to become teachers.

The number of initial teaching qualifications declined steadily between 1997 and 2016, according to data gathered by Gluesing. With an annual high of 9,664 certifications in 2004, Michigan witnessed an average growth in certifications from 1997 to 2004. From there, the numbers decreased, reaching a low of only 3,696 in 2016. Between 2006 and 2009, the numbers fell by 29%.

According to recent official data, there has been an increase recently. 4,017 certificates were given out in 2018–19, 4,283 in 2019–20, and 4,302 in 2020–21. In recent years, teacher remuneration has also been a problem.

Gluesing, who started out as a teacher in Wisconsin, thinks that his initial pay was roughly $27,000. According to a 2021 study by the Lansing State Journal, the average wage for new instructors with a bachelor’s degree is currently around $40,000. Some school systems went to extreme lengths to keep their instructors, like Detroit Public Schools, which increased the starting salary for new teachers to $52,000, increased the pay for veteran teachers, and shortened the period for contractual rises.

Changes in benefits for teachers and other school personnel, such as wage reductions, have also contributed to the shortage of new instructors or the high rate of teacher retirement. People can do math, according to Gluesing, “if you compare the cost of education in 1996 to the cost of school now.” They can ask themselves, “How long will it take me to pay off that investment on a teacher income if I invest four years at Central (Michigan University) and it’s going to cost me between $80,000 and $100,000 to get through that education?”

News Summary:

  • To address local teacher shortage, efforts include financial investments and new certification pathways
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