Big increase in teacher vacancies having impact on South Carolina schools




  • In Business
  • 2022-11-23 23:08:49Z
  • By WSOC
 

A new report shows a nearly 40-percent increase in teacher vacancies in South Carolina compared to last year, and the numbers are having a real impact on local schools.

Teaching jobs used to see dozens of applications, now it's hard to get even one applicant for certain positions, one administrator told Channel 9′s Tina Terry.

"I was not surprised to see the numbers, because every year we go down this path," said Sherry East, a science teacher in Rock Hill.

East is referring to the recent report from the Center of Educator Recruitment, Retention and Advancement. It says this school year started with more than 1,400 vacant teacher positions in South Carolina, compared to a little over 1,000 last year. It's a 39% increase in one year, and it's up 165% over the past three years.

MORE: Educators from 4 local school districts ask South Carolina lawmakers for pay raise

"I think it's mainly pay and working conditions," East said, pointing to those as the largest factors driving current teachers out of classrooms around the state. She said it's also discouraging young people from becoming teachers.

"We've seen some colleges shut down their teacher education programs because a lot of young people don't want to become teachers anymore," East said.

Lancaster County Schools is just one local district feeling the impact. The district has about 35 teacher openings as of Wednesday.

"There are times now we post a job and we won't get any applicants, and that's scary," said Lydia Quinn, the chief operations officer for the district.

Quinn says the district is trying new methods to draw teachers into the classroom.

"We've looked at foreign exchange programs with teachers, we've looked at virtual teachers, we've hired retirees, we're working with student interns almost done with their program," Quinn said.

While districts are working with students finishing up their programs, the report also said that the number of new teachers who were recent South Carolina college graduates went down to 17 percent. That number had ranged from 21 to 36 percent in previous years.

>>Download WSOC's apps to keep up with news and weather wherever you go

East says the only thing that will reverse this crisis is real change in the way teachers are treated and paid.

"Teachers have to go in early, stay late, they have to work weekends and give up time with their families in order to get the job done, and they're tired of doing that," East said.

The state's minimum salary for teachers is $40,000. Lancaster County Schools says it's already paying teachers about 13% over that minimum. District leaders say they're also trying to make sure new applicants are aware of other benefits, like the state's retirement and health care packages.

(WATCH BELOW >> Home alone: Couple accused of leaving 2-year-old in South Carolina apartment for NY trip)


COMMENTS

More Related News

Friday Night Notes: National Signing Day watch, the latest commitments and more
Friday Night Notes: National Signing Day watch, the latest commitments and more

A look at the latest recruiting news as National Signing Day awaits on Wednesday, February 1.

2024 prospect Amari Jefferson announces first-12 teams
2024 prospect Amari Jefferson announces first-12 teams

2024 prospect Amari Jefferson announces his first-12 teams.

The Murdaugh family murder trial, explained
The Murdaugh family murder trial, explained
  • US
  • 2023-01-27 10:55:10Z

Alex Murdaugh is standing trial for the murders of his wife and son, a case that has exposed years of fraudulent behavior and spurred investigations into...

SC defense attorney questions why so many on Murdaugh jury say they never heard of the case
SC defense attorney questions why so many on Murdaugh jury say they never heard of the case
  • US
  • 2023-01-26 21:03:20Z

Jack Swerling says the Murdaugh jury reflects the community, except for an under representation of Black South Carolinians.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. returning to Florence Motor Speedway to compete in IceBreaker
Dale Earnhardt Jr. returning to Florence Motor Speedway to compete in IceBreaker

Fans who missed seeing Dale Earnhardt Jr. race at South Carolina's Florence Motor Speedway in November will get another chance in February. The NASCAR Hall of Famer will return to Florence on Feb. 10-11 to race a late model stock car in the IceBreaker event that opens the season at the 4/10-mile oval. Much like […]

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Business