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New York City Doesn't Have Teacher Shortages: What It's Doing Right

New York City Doesn't Have Teacher Shortages: What It's Doing Right

New York City is not without its problems in education: funding low-income schools, turning around underperforming ones, dealing with unprecedented high opt-out numbers on standardized state exams, to name a few. But one problem it has yet to face with each coming school year is one that has been destabilizing districts nationwide: teacher shortages.

A recent New York Times article painted a picture of desperate districts, using not-yet-certified teachers to fill vacancies without any other options left.

But "[w]hile recruiters elsewhere are increasingly relying on people without teaching credentials to fill positions, New York’s excess supply gives principals the chance to be selective when reviewing résumés," said the Chalkbeat New York.

Some of it has a little to do with luck. According to the article, the public school enrollment in New York has remained relatively steady over the last decade, whereas states like Arizona and North Carolina have seem massive spikes in enrollment, leading to more positions to fill.

Some of it has to do with proper state funding. As some states are still recovering from massive budget cuts and layoffs that occurred during the recession, districts throughout New York are receiving a budget increase of 6 percent.

"Cosimo Tangorra, superintendent of Niskayuna, a 4,000-student district of north of Albany, said the extra aid allowed him to hire 44 new teachers for the coming fall," the article said.

New York also has a competitive teacher market, with only one in three teachers being hired out of teacher preparation programs, leading to a surplus.

With the current problems in New York's education system, however, "[s]ome educators are concerned that teacher shortages may still be on New York’s horizon, thanks partially to the public’s focus on teacher evaluations and standardized testing. The state is also introducing a new set of certification exams designed to make it more difficult to enter the profession."

Read the full story here and comment with your thoughts below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

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