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How US Education Secretary nominee Miguel Cardona can stop the teacher shortage


Editor’s note: Miguel Cardona – President Joe Biden’s choice for secretary of education – faces several urgent and contentious priorities , including reopening schools safely, addressing systemic racism within schools, and reversing the ever-growing teacher shortage.

Here, four experts explain how to recruit more people to become educators in the nation’s public schools.

1. Increase pay and reduce class sizes

The teacher shortage has become a crisis in the United States. In 2018, there was an estimated shortage of over 100,000 K-12 teachers. Meanwhile, the demand for K-12 teaching jobs is expected to continue to increase 5% per year through 2028.

Part of the reason for the shortage has to do with pay and working conditions. On average, teachers make roughly 20% less than other college graduates, according to research from the Economic Policy Institute, a think tank that focuses on worker issues. A majority of teachers work additional jobs – either within or outside their schools – to supplement their pay.

Meanwhile, class sizes continue to grow, which teacher unions say negatively affects teachers and students , despite statements to the contrary by former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos . Peer-reviewed research […]

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