I have many friends and former students who are or have been classroom teachers. It’s not usually the pay that pushes them out in many cases. It’s often the conditions in which they are expected to teach and the emphasis on high-stakes tests. This articles explores the issue well. It begins:
At every stage, getting and keeping teachers in U.S. classrooms has become a challenge. Longtime teachers are retiring while mid-career and novice teachers are leaving for other pursuits. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 8 percent of the men and women teaching in public schools during the 2011-12 school year left the profession the next year. And fewer young people are signing up to spend time in classrooms in the first place.
A new analysis from the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute argues that “providing adequate wages and benefits is a crucial tool for attracting and keeping the teachers America’s children need.” The report notes that teacher pay has fallen behind what other comparable workers earn. While public-school teachers made $30 less per week (adjusted for inflation) in 2015 than in 1996, around $1,092 from $1,122, wages for college graduates rose from $1,292 to $1,416. Where other college-educated workers used to make just slightly more per week than teachers, they now earn significantly more. (The report’s authors acknowledge that teachers generally have better benefits than other professionals, so focusing solely on wages overstates the disadvantage teachers face in terms of total compensation, but they point out that only wages and not benefits can be spent and saved.)
Read the rest @ The Atlantic