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Number of College Freshmen Majoring in Education at New Low

Number of College Freshmen Majoring in Education At New Low

A 2016 national survey of college freshmen has found that the number of students determined to major in education is at the lowest it’s been in 45 years, says

"Just 4.2 percent [of students] intend to major in education—a typical first step to becoming a teacher—compared to 11 percent in 2000; 10 percent in 1990; and 11 percent in 1971, according to data gathered by the UCLA’s Cooperative Institutional Research Program,” the article said.

The National Education Association president, Lily Eskelsen Garcia, said that the survey’s results are concerning because they indicate a lack of qualified educators for students who deserve them.

Eskelsen Garcia said the solutions to fixing the problem are not a secret, but the time to act is now.

“Increase pay for teachers, she urged. Make college affordable and broaden access to federal loan forgiveness programs for educators,” the article said.

Updating undergraduate programs to give teacher hopefuls the best skills as possible and connecting new teachers with both mentors and teachers’ unions is important, too.

Of overall most important, however, is increasing respect for the profession, professor of education and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania, Richard Ingersoll said.

"'The data consistently show us that a big issue is how much voice, how much say, do teachers have collectively in the school-wide decisions that affect their jobs? Are teachers treated as professionals? That’s a huge issue,' he told NEA Today last year.”

Read the full post.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor


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