Report: Teacher shortage worse in Idaho than other states

Posted at 12:17 PM, Dec 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-26 14:18:46-05

About a third of all teachers who are certified in Idaho each year don't go on to get teaching jobs in the state, and many of those who do don't stay around for long, a recent report found.
The state is steadily losing 10 percent of its teacher population every year, said Christina Linder, educator effectiveness program manager for the Idaho State Board of Education, during a Thursday meeting.
"And this doesn't even account for growth," she said.
The report found that among first-year teachers, 15 percent don't return for a second year.
The report also found that 37 percent of the 1,952 teaching certificates issued in Idaho in 2016-2017 went to people who are not employed at an Idaho public school, according to an educator pipeline report.
Many of those teachers likely found jobs in other states that offer higher salaries, Linder said.
"That's a lot of teachers we are not capturing," she said.
Although the teacher shortage is seen nationwide, the report suggests the problem may be worse in Idaho than in other states.
The problem has hit the rural areas like Magic Valley region in south-central Idaho the hardest.
Replacing teachers costs the $6 million each year, the report said.
Two years ago, the Legislature passed a career ladder law that would increase wages for kindergarten-through-12th-grade teachers over five years as a way to attract new teachers.
The second part of the plan was to raise pay enough to retain veteran teachers, but State Board President Linda Clark said the second element still needs work.