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Nationwide teacher shortage

Posted by Cambion 
Nationwide teacher shortage
January 16, 2020
Not that this is the least bit surprising. Also, this is a Florida story, but there are plenty of stories in the same vein from all over the country:
https://weartv.com/news/local/teacher-shortage-fueled-by-declining-enrollment-of-education-majors



And apparently it's so bad that some Florida districts are considering hiring people who are "alternatively certified" - in other words, they're going to hire people who are not education majors and teach them how to teach. Because I'm sure that will go over well.

Quote

William Crawley, Dean of UWF’s College of Education and Professional Studies, believes the shortage of teachers on the job and students in the classroom can be blamed on the low pay across the State for teachers.

No, I think it's more along the lines of low pay for what they are expected to do now. Teachers have to be in charge of HUGE classes, meaning the students won't all get adequate attention, especially if some asshole's mainstreamed spergtard is flapping across the room and class gets derailed because the teacher has to try and make Tardo sit down. They have to basically parent these kids too because the parents are too busy doing who fucking knows what to do the jobs they signed up for. Teachers are expected to do so much more than before, but without a salary to match the workload.

Not to mention all the violent fuckers - tards or otherwise - that are allowed to physically assault teachers on a daily basis and the teachers can't do a damn thing about it. Plus administration will want their say in how the classrooms are run, which is easy for them because they aren't the ones teaching.



It's happening for sure, folks. People know what rotten assholes kids and parents are, so they aren't becoming teachers. So now they have to get people who don't know how much the job sucks to come in and teach, which I'm sure will work out about as well as mainstreaming, because as we all know, sticking kids with people who are totally unqualified to deal with them has always had positive results. And since these people aren't "real" teachers, that means the school can probably pay them less too. Plus, unlike other jobs that pay a sign-on bonus because the employer knows how shitty the job is, school districts can't afford to give every poor slob $1,000 to take the job.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 16, 2020
In my area they are trying to get immigrants to become teachers. I guess they think people from other countries don't know how shitty American kids are, or they are too desperate to come here to care.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 17, 2020
I was a teacher for 13 years. I made decent money, so that wasn’t the problem. I actually took a pay cut after I left.

Reasons I left, in no particular order:
- district office administrators that preached the importance of “customer service,” which in their eyes meant never telling a parent no
- parents that were too involved, resulting in lazy children
- parents that believed their children were perfect angels, resulting in smug children that knew mommy would rush to their defense over everything
- parents that were uninvolved, resulting in children that were basically feral
- parents that did not believe in using the word no, resulting in children that would have epic meltdowns every time they were told no at school
- the constant epic meltdowns that resulted in destroyed property and disrupted learning
- the constant fights with parents because I used the word no
- The district’s fear of special needs parents suing them, because something the teacher did/did not do can always be construed as violating a spec ed IEP if mommy has the right lawyer
- special needs children that were allowed to hit other children
- special needs children that were allowed to disrupt the learning of other children by pretty much any method that can be imagined (and some that can’t)
- not being able to enjoy teaching the good children, because the out of control ones need to be kept under control
- having to give a state test in the midst of the chaos
- wasting both student and teacher time on state test that serves absolutely no purpose other than seeing if the teacher can teach to the test is a good teacher
- not being able to spend time on creative activities or just following the thread of some random thing the children showed interest in, because that state test won’t teach to itself, dammit!

There’s more, but that covers the bulk of it. It got worse every year until I finally left.

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"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 18, 2020
I belong to a lot of teacher groups on Facebook and I've seen a lot of personal stories about the fuckery that goes on in schools today. I finally quit my teaching job after nine long years. I got a job in a better school district that is a bit behind the times in a good way. Here is why I left my old job:

* Teachers being blamed for everything the kids did. Snotleigh trashed your classroom? You need to relate to him more! Bitchford threw a book at you? Clearly, you should have given him stickers and candy.
* Positive Behavior Intervention System (PBIS). Pssst! It doesn't work.
* Having a master's degree in music, being an active musical performer outside of school, and being forced to do an hour and a half of lunch duty every day in addition to half of my schedule being "coverages" (watching K,1, and 2 classrooms while the teachers pulled kids out one by one for testing).
* Putting in for a transfer to get out of the hellhole school I was in only to have the transfer request ignored.
* Catty bitch cliques, gossip, and being made to feel like a pariah because I was a fine arts teacher. I read somewhere that cliques and bullying happen when people feel powerless; they turn on each other.
* Watching a cafeteria of 400 students by myself during A.M. duty and having no assistance when fist fights broke out.
* Having no rehearsal time with my musical ensembles, and my concerts thusly sounding like shit.
* Being given no chance to interview when the district opened a performing arts magnet school. I guess being an accomplished musician with a master's from a top-notch school and university teaching experience meant jack shit when my real function was to babysit kids in the cafeteria.
* Being forced to sit through countless in-services that had nothing to do with my field, chiefly those that pertained to a reading program that didn't work. Seriously though...the district spent over a million on a certain reading program that was utterly useless. I searched it on Google and found numerous articles discrediting it.
*Being under constant surveillance via cameras placed around the building. The principal breathed down teachers' necks for talking to each other during duties, but said nothing to kids who were fighting, throwing food, knocking disabled children off of their seats, screaming, running around, and making themselves puke. I wish I was fabricating that last part.

I'm in a much better place now. Hopefully it doesn't turn into a shit show like my old job. Good districts are few and far between these days. I'm fortunate to be in the Northeast, where unions are strong. The South seems like a cesspool in terms of bargaining rights (or lack thereof), pay, health benefits, class sizes, access to resources, and job security. That being said, I had to take a huge pay cut when I left the aforementioned position. I'm much happier and feel like my old self, though.

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Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 18, 2020
I don't know why anyone would get into teaching. I hear from long-term teachers about how children have gotten worse and worse over the years.

Even if that wasn't the case, I would still find it hellish, because I hate being around kids so much. I'm so glad I wasn't born in an era when a woman's choices were teacher, secretary, nurse, or mother.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 18, 2020
Lucy, I was a music teacher too, and I experienced all of that as well. My final year of teaching I spent an entire day every week as a library aide. Those hours came out of my planning time and my ensemble rehearsal time. Every morning I had a half an hour of hall duty, every lunchtime I had a half hour lunch duty with a special needs student that needed to be spoon fed, and every afternoon I was assigned to a different home room to basically babysit so “important” grade level teachers could have 45 minutes of common planning time. This common planning time was in addition to the 45 minutes they got during special every day, so in total they got 270 minutes a week. Special area teachers got 30 minutes once a day, so 150 a week. This was a contract violation, since 150 minutes of planning time was significantly under what was outlined in the contract (225 minutes). Grade level teachers also got their grade’s half hour recess time as planning three times a week, since they were only required to do a lunch or recess duty twice a week. Special area teachers had a lunch or recess duty five days a week.

The union didn’t give a shit about special area teachers and wouldn’t risk rocking the boat for us since there were so few that would benefit. The contract was written in really loose language that gave the district a lot of loopholes (“recommended” and “every effort shall be made to provide” were favorites), so without a union that was willing to fight the special area teachers just had to bend over and take it. The planning time violation was just one of many. I had it relatively easy since I was assigned full time to one building; the traveling band and orchestra teachers REALLY got fucked over.

The final year it became clear that I was just a glorified babysitter that existed only as a tool to make life easier for the important teachers. My concerts and the content I taught in my classroom were an afterthought. I mentioned the state test in my previous post; that pencil and paper state test was THE deciding factor in grading my effectiveness as a music teacher. My concerts had nothing to do with it. My concerts could have been stellar or shitty and it didn’t matter.

Don’t even get me started on the useless fucking curriculum meetings and in-service days. My music lessons may have gone to shit, but at least I was well versed in the math and ELA curriculum.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________
"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 19, 2020
I'm curious - for those of you that have been teachers and worked in other fields, did it feel like there was more suspicion and contempt for women without children in child-centric occupations compared to other jobs? Was there an expectation that since you work with children you must want to have them?
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 19, 2020
This is just another example of breeders shooting themselves in the foot. They like to blame teachers for everything, expect too much, and now there's a teacher shortage. I wouldn't want to be a teacher for many reasons. I think dealing with brats and breeders would send me to the nuthouse. Kudos for the people here who have done it! You're better than I am.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 19, 2020
Quote
yurble
I'm curious - for those of you that have been teachers and worked in other fields, did it feel like there was more suspicion and contempt for women without children in child-centric occupations compared to other jobs? Was there an expectation that since you work with children you must want to have them?

I have worked as a social worker for all ages, teacher for adults and daycare worker for nursery and school age children.
In my experience, parents are so immersed in their kid-centric lifestyle that they can not even process the concept of a child-free lifestyle.
Most parents had a stunned clueless reaction to any concept of a person with a child-free life.
You could literally see a "Does not compute" look on their faces.
Outright hostility was rare.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 19, 2020
My coworkers did not seem to care. I shared as little as possible about my personal life with the parents, for many reasons other than being CF, so most of them did not know my childed status.

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"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 20, 2020
Quote
yurble
I'm curious - for those of you that have been teachers and worked in other fields, did it feel like there was more suspicion and contempt for women without children in child-centric occupations compared to other jobs? Was there an expectation that since you work with children you must want to have them?

I received a shit ton of contempt and hate from specific moos and women teachers when I was finishing up my student teaching back in the day, because I was naive enough to tell them that I wasn't getting married and having children. My mentor teacher gave me the bare minimum score for passing student teaching because of this. I had to explain to the university proffs why this happened, how somebody with a basically straight A average passed student teaching by 1 point.

I've always kept my CF status quiet in the workplace because of this. I might have found myself the butt of bingoes periodically, but I shut that down quite quickly. The bingo shitfest hit the fan when we bought a house because society expects you to fill up all those bedrooms with sproggen.

There have only been a handful of nasty situations with breeders and my CF status, but I took care of it personally. Only once did I have to involve the admins over this, as the situation would have been considered workplace harassment and hostile work environment.

In every situation, the hate and jealousy came from other women teachers, not men.

LoveToLurk and LucyTrainWreck,

Preach it! I'm also a music teacher with BA and MA from good schools. I perform outside school hours and used to run my own studios on the side. There's other things I've done internationally in other creative domains.

You'd think the admins downtown would want to put me into the good positions because they have an experienced, talented teacher on their staff. Nope! It's all about who kisses which ass. I've been given the WORST position in the department because I'm older, I'm white, and I refuse to kiss a certain person's ass. I recently found out I was supposed to be assigned an excellent position because the high-up admins saw my performances and wanted to utilize me where I could do the most good. But then the admin-who-expects-their-ass-kissed used their authority to change me from a good building/position to this shitty assignment, giving my spot to the teacher who kisses their ass. Never mind that this other teacher is truly incompetent, he used connections to get out of the position he was hired for because he didn't like it, and to take mine.

Everything else you described, from class coverages to lunch duties to no rehearsal time to catty teacher cliques is so on point. I'm also in the Northeast, and reading your descriptions made me think you work in my district.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 20, 2020
Most definitely!!! When I complained about the amount of after school paperwork I was told I "shouldn't complain because I didn't have a family to tend to." ! ?!?!?! I guess my husband and mother didn't count as "family!" I ended up retiring a year earlier than scheduled and haven't regretted it for a minute!!
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
January 22, 2020
Quote
mumofsixbirds
This is just another example of breeders shooting themselves in the foot. They like to blame teachers for everything, expect too much, and now there's a teacher shortage. I wouldn't want to be a teacher for many reasons. I think dealing with brats and breeders would send me to the nuthouse. Kudos for the people here who have done it! You're better than I am.

Exactly. Parents were my biggest enemy when I was a teacher (there were a few really great parents, but they were in the minority). I was there for more than a decade, and in the two years since I left there have been two different teachers in the position. Can’t really have a strong music program for the kids if there’s a new person every year. The only people these parents are hurting are their own children.

Word is getting out that teaching is miserable, and fewer people are willing to do it. Out of my best and brightest students, not a single one that I kept tabs on has chosen to go into teaching. Good for them.

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"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 02, 2020
Quote
gracieallen
Most definitely!!! When I complained about the amount of after school paperwork I was told I "shouldn't complain because I didn't have a family to tend to." ! ?!?!?! I guess my husband and mother didn't count as "family!" I ended up retiring a year earlier than scheduled and haven't regretted it for a minute!!

I guess they're only family when they come out of your vagina.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 02, 2020
My teaching career lasted for five years, and I saw all of the same crap other posters mentioned. I was careful to not share too much personal information with coworkers/parents, so that limited blowback. Stuck it out in my position for five years (gave serious thought to quitting after years one and two,) to become vested in the state pension, and one of the happiest days of my life was handing in my resignation.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 03, 2020
I thought teaching would stink when I was a kid, because of having to be around kids. And enough teachers (not all) complained bitterly about their salaries. At least they had cafeteria, library and recess aides back then. And the problem kids used to be the rarity where a teacher could luck out and not have even one in their classroom all year. It sounds like there are lots of problem kids now. Why a hierarchy with special area teachers at the bottom? It isn't as if they have less education or more time on their hands. Sounds like a big CF designed to turn teachers against each other. Plus the addition of parents who don't parent and flip out when teachers try to have order in their classrooms. Ugh.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 03, 2020
Yeah, not surprised the shortage is increasing. I'm looking to pivot to a different profession. A friend of mine who's been teaching about as long as I have (about 19-20 years) took a leave of absence this year, took biz courses over the summer, and bought a bar & grill. His reasons for leaving overlap with a lot of mine:
-students coming to school with increasingly serious problems every year: food insecurity, trauma and all its attending issues, absent parents, financial insecurity, etc. Schools don't have enough counselors, social workers, and support staff to properly help these kids
-Lack of support from administration in just about every area
-Disruptions and loss of instructional time due to damaged students and their behavior. I'm so sick of having to clear the damn room.
-Lack of common sense about parenting. So many of them are either indifferent and/or absent, or helicoptering around their kid all the time. There's very little middle ground.
-Parents who believe their kid can do no wrong
-Parents who are 100 percent certain their pretty average kid is gifted, and won't leave me the fuck alone about it. Plus their kid picks up on it and is a total shit to me and never do anything but a half-ass attempt and blame poor scores on the work being "too easy", yet fail utterly when I set up projects and tasks that are aimed at their suppposed giftedness.
-Parents who expect NO resilience at all from their kids and get up in my face if their child experiences any kind of unease or discomfort.
-Mandated systems for dealing with student behavior that flat-out don't work, resulting in blame placed on me for the violent kid continuing his violent behavior
-Ridiculous dependence on standardized testing, with higher and higher pressure each year. Not to mention the loss of actual teaching time due to the time spent prepping for those tests. The pressure on both students and teachers is horrific.
-Zero tolerance policies being applied to situations that clearly don't warrant it.
-Increasing class size and expecting performance to go up at the same time

Honestly, pay hasn't really been an issue. It's a matter of what I'm expected to do for that pay, and how little control I have and how little respect I get in return. Teacher pay has always been a totally liveable salary for me. However, I don't have kids, I don't want a new car every few years, and I am very good at living within my means.

Also, one last note: "shortage" is sometimes an overstatement. Colleges are cranking out teachers; it's a matter of getting them to work in places that are always short on teachers. Competition can be fierce in average, suburban districts, or at specialty/magnet schools. Inner city districts will always be short on teachers because work there is fucking HARD. Texas and California public schools will always be looking for teachers because those states are known for huge districts with no funding and diverse, high-need populations. Bilingual and SpEd teachers can find work more easily, too. The average regular-ed classroom teacher lasts only about four or five years in the field.

I tend to keep my CF status to myself, but I don't hide it really. I've gotten some odd looks for sure, but I've also had some teachers pause for a beat, then tell me they can see exactly how that choice would be a smart one for someone going into teaching.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 03, 2020
Parents seem to think that school is like Burger King and they can have it their way. They send their rotten undisciplined screeching bastards to school with zero social skills or structure, but oh, they don't want the teachers trying to stifle their kids in any way - no punishment, no detention, no loss of privileges - just let the kid be a shithead without consequence. Just like at home.

They want their kids passed and given straight A's even if the kid did no work and failed every exam. If Junior hurts another student, he's not to get in trouble because "he's just a child" or "boys will be boys" or some shit, but if another student hurts Junior, Moo wants that other kid punished to the farthest extent - suspension, expulsion, loss of all privileges, criminal charges, basically everything short of drawing and quartering. Parents don't want their tard children segregated in a classroom that would be beneficial for them, so they put them in with the normal kids and don't you dare treat them any differently! Unless of course they cause trouble that a normal child would be punished for, in which case, they didn't know any better because herpderptard.

If the kids can't read, tie their shoes, sit still or shit in a toilet, that's somehow the teachers' fault and not the fault of the people who chose to make those children. I swear if parents worked half as hard at being parents as they do being assholes to people who aid in the development of their kids, then their offspring might not suck to the point where people no longer want to teach.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 03, 2020
Honestly Cambion, you're quite right, parenting (or lack thereof) and administration are a large part of why I'm leaving the profession. Well, and the culture as a whole, and how parenting fits into that. I'm not departing due to the students...even the troubled ones didn't ask for any of this, and their parents are usually the ones who got them there. We're expecting more and more of students and teachers, but nothing more from parents (and getting less and less).

My problem has never been with the students themselves. I have so many positive memories of my students, and it kind of breaks my heart to leave this job. But I can't do this anymore.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 04, 2020
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randomcfchick
The average regular-ed classroom teacher lasts only about four or five years in the field.
Yes! Some do go into administration or become guidance counselors, but many flee the education field altogether. Math ed people (former HS math teacher, here) often end up at banks and mortgage companies. When I was finishing up undergrad, there were a handful of math ed majors that hated student teaching so vehemently, they took additional courses and graduated with a pure math degree.

Quote
randomcfchick
I've gotten some odd looks for sure, but I've also had some teachers pause for a beat, then tell me they can see exactly how that choice would be a smart one for someone going into teaching.
When I was a student (I'm 55, so decades ago) I had many unmarried older teachers. When I was in the classroom (2000--2005) the youngest of those teachers were retiring. One told me if she were just starting out, there's no way she'd stay in teaching.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 08, 2020
I was going to make this a separate topic, but I figured it was relevant to this one. This is a guide for teachers on how to deal with violent students:

https://www.weareteachers.com/student-violence/#.Xjz5pS-6bRp.facebook



I love how the article specifies that teachers should receive administrative support after documenting violent behavior among students. LOL I wonder how often that happens. Administration never sides with the teachers because they're too busy sucking the parents' taints.

The very last thing on that list is to know when to leave a dangerous job. As more kids turn violent or as that student violence escalates, I think more educators will just skip to that last step.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 08, 2020
I think the attitude of the parents is that they pay taxes. Well, they don't pay near enough taxes for the costs they incur. The tax system is written to benefit parantsites.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 09, 2020
Oh, and the average of five years thing that I mentioned...that's an actual mean, not median. Lots of teachers stay on and teach for like 30 years, so to get a mean of 5 that means tons of teachers don't even last a year!

There was a guy who was hired on the same year I was. We were both first-year teachers right out of college. Dude lasted THREE DAYS. I wasn't ever in his classroom and never watched him work, so I can't comment as to what exactly went down. I can say from what I saw of him he was incredibly unhappy, panicked (but trying not to show it), and totally at a loss for what to do. I have no idea how he made it through student teaching, let alone got himself hired.
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 09, 2020
Quote
freya
Why a hierarchy with special area teachers at the bottom? It isn't as if they have less education or more time on their hands. Sounds like a big CF designed to turn teachers against each other. Plus the addition of parents who don't parent and flip out when teachers try to have order in their classrooms. Ugh.

In my district, we were just seen as having the “easier” jobs. Specials class was where the kids went so the Important Teachers could have a break, and district office did nothing to combat that attitude. I guess they think that all these concerts and art shows and field days and literary nights just plan themselves.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________
"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Nationwide teacher shortage
February 10, 2020
You have summed up EVERY reason why I retired a year early!!! I used to really love teaching and I had a good salary at it in NYC but the last 5 years turned into everything you've stated here!! It started back in the mid 1990s with principals and admins giving up tenure for a 33% raise. Then the higher ups had them by the short and curlies. Before this tenured principals and admins could tell an a$$hole parent to shove it or transfer of have arrested some feral brat who was tearing up the school. Then came "No Chyuld Left Behind" and the testing culture. Then it became all about test scores!! And from there teachers started seeing the writing on the wall. They started retiring (like me) and quitting in droves.
I would advise anyone thinking about teaching to RUN LIKE HELL!!!!!!!
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