Over the past year, the workforce has been devastated by a loss of many teachers who quit or retired amid the coronavirus pandemic.
While a shortage of teachers has certainly been troubling for many districts, there is an upside: Those seeking to enter the profession have more opportunities to do so than ever before.
Instead of graduating college and then substitute teaching, or finding a job wherever there is an opening, college graduates have a much better chance of getting hired right away, and actually teaching what they want amid the surge in demand.
“I’ve been in the field for close to 20 years, and I’ve never seen the field so wide open for our graduates as I am now,” said Cynthia Carver, associate professor of teacher development at Oakland University.
Carver says she is receiving calls on a regular basis from administrators who are looking for teachers to fill their classrooms.
Carver also says that the problem goes beyond the pandemic: Many people are discouraged from the profession for a number of reasons.
“It’s a complex problem, and one that’s going to need a lot of solutions,” Carver said. “One (solution) will be giving teachers more autonomy, another (includes looking) at pay and benefits. But we also have to look at celebrating the profession and encouraging people to take on this wonderful career.”
For many who want to become teachers, their goal of making a difference in the classroom may be reached even sooner than expected.
Watch the full report in the video above.