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I call this a crisis


Senior Member
I’m so sad for the profession I loved.
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported by the Wall Street Journal, roughly 300,000 public school educators and staff left the field between Feb. 2020 and May 2022.


Senior Member
I wonder

what the normal number is. (from previous years)

Teaching was stressful when I was teaching. I can imagine the added stress with the addition of Covid. I hope all those teachers find new and rewarding careers they enjoy and where they can make a good living.


Senior Member
Good question. I tried researching and found wildly differing results, including this:
More than a half-million teachers have left the profession since the start of 2020. In a typical year, about 8 percent of teachers leave, but this year saw more teachers leave in the middle of the school year than normal.
BUT, based on my friends alone, I can name 4 people who resigned or took early retirement in June. These are people who used to love teaching.

Also, when we see states like Florida hiring non-college-graduates as teachers, I believe there is cause for concern for our profession and for the public perception of our profession. JMO


Senior Member

I would be a part of that statistic. Also, I know of 5 teachers who retired during that period too from our little district of 70 teachers. So I wonder what percentage were retirees.


Senior Member
It makes me sad but I also see it happening. I think there are a lot of factors.
The public lack of respect for the profession is huge.
The increasing demands on teachers along with lower pay.
The lack of flexibility.
The expectations to use your cell phone, or your money to buy supplies and decorations.
The increasing number of rules to follow about curriculum, what books you can read, etc makes it scary.
Covid showed how important it was to be near family. I’ve seen many teachers retire early to move near their grandkids.
I’ve also seen younger teachers and paras move to districts that were offering more money.


Senior Member
It’s sad. It truly is not the job I fell in love with. Of course it was always a lot of work but the fun is gone and the demands are ridiculous. I would do anything to go back to the teacher issues and stress we dealt with even just 10 years ago.


Senior Member
Also, when we see states like Florida hiring non-college-graduates as teachers, I believe there is cause for concern for our profession and for the public perception of our profession.

The need for teachers in Florida is quite disturbing.

I applied for a job at a tutoring center today. They only hire certified teachers, mostly retirees. They have a higher standard than our governor.


Senior Member
I would absolutely retire if I could. I have 7 years to wait. It's not really the kids although some years are worse than others. It's the changing curriculum every two seconds and changing the way they want things done. It's the spending so much time jumping through hoops to prove I'm a good teacher that I don't have time to be a good teacher. It's the stress of getting so much done in so little time. It's the parents not being on my side and ready to sue or threaten to sue or get you fired at the drop of a hat. It's just not the same as when I started my career. I loved those kids. I don't have time to love them now. Too much to do and punishment if you don't get it done. We don't have time for feelings or fun.


Senior Member
I’m 14 years in and trying to leave the field.

I’m also in Florida, education is a mess here for so many different reasons (some of which are specific to my large district). Florida also raised beginning teachers (needed) but veteran teachers didn’t get a comparable percentage of a raise.
But, on a state level… this came out today: https://www.baynews9.com/fl/tampa/n...ld-entice-first-responders-into-the-classroom
(Yea, let’s give incentives to recruit people who don’t even want to teach vs retaining the already highly qualified teachers that we have :mad:)

I also live near one of the largest universities in the country and they’ve told us they aren’t getting students going into education like they used to. We don’t get near as many intern (student) teachers as we used to.
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Full Member
Lilbitkm is right!

There definitely needs to be an emphasis on retaining the good teachers that are still working! So much is being given (well, really thrown at) to brand new teachers. In my district they say they "have to do this to attract good teachers". Don't get me wrong, I was new once, too. Unfortunately, it was a different time, a time when I couldn't choose the highest paying district or the one with the most up-to-date with technology. I was just lucky to get a job offer. Now, over a decade later, I'm making a few hundred dollars more than a brand new teacher just starting in the district. I love teaching; it is all I ever wanted to do. However, I don't know how much longer I can keep giving my all in a situation where I feel so undervalued and unappreciated.


Senior Member
My daughter is one of those statics. She just couldn't take it anymore- constant pressure about test scores in a low income district where nothing was done about poor attendance. Add in Covid and she had had enough. She is teaching two students in basically homeschool situation- working 9-1, making just a little less than what she made in a public school.


Senior Member
I could have retired 2 years ago with full pension and benefits. I decided I was going to retire in June,2026. Nope, I’m retiring this year. I didn’t want to retire in all the Covid mess, so this year is it.

My district had over 20 teachers resign in June. Last week I received a phone call from a colleague who is now admin. Do I know of anyone who is looking for a teaching job? K-3!!!! My district has never had an issue filling jobs. They are scrambling to fill jobs. It’s going to get worse.


Senior Member
Many factors

Teachers are often vilified by politicians and even parents. Since NCLB there has been so much emphasis on student achievement and 100% of the burden falls on the teacher if students don’t achieve some artificial golden standard mandated by the state. Curriculum is constantly changing and teachers are often expected to literally “be on the same page”—no room for fun or creativity with little joy for teaching or learning. Plus teacher evaluation (Danielson, Mariano, etc.) adds another level of unrealistic expectations and stress.

With all that said I noticed that there are only 5 current openings for teachers in the district I retired from two years ago. Why??? Well, the two biggest factors are salary and a strong union. My district is the highest paying district in the state and my state ranks 6th highest in teacher salary in the nation. We have an incredibly strong unions with about 98% union membership statewide.

Many of the lower paying states like Florida are right-to-work states with low union membership which impacts union effectiveness. I think their union membership is about 63%.


Senior Member
WalkDontRun… I definitely agree with your points especially your first paragraph!

Many of the lower paying states like Florida are right-to-work states with low union membership which impacts union effectiveness. I think their union membership is about 63%.

Union membership varies by district, my district tends to hover around 60% (under 50% and we become decertified and lose the union). However, I can tell you that as a single teacher I can’t afford the additional cost of over $75 a month especially being that our union has never been strong due to a multitude of state laws.

It’s also illegal to strike in Florida, we could lose our teaching licenses along with other repercussions.


Senior Member
Lilbitkm I agree with you that union dues are a big price to pay if you don’t have strong unions that can negotiate strong contracts. I am fortunate to live in a pro-union and pro-teacher (for the most part) state. So many states are paying the price for not valuing teachers.


Senior Member

Teachers are often vilified by politicians and even parents.
In 1986 (?) I attended a lecture by a politician who had switched from the Republican to the Democratic party. She said the main reason she switched was because of the (then secret) Republican plans to get rid of teachers unions (and other unions) and ultimately public schools. A big part of the plan was to start vilifying teachers and college professors as well as the unions. It appears that they have succeeded, because I know teachers who will not tell people they are or were teachers because of the backlash. People used to respect teachers but that is a thing of the past.


Senior Member
leaving education trend

This is me unfortunately. I enjoyed so many parts of the job, but my health is way more important. I stuck around until the end of the school year after COVID started and then I left. It was the best decision even though I felt like a failure at the time. We'll see if I decide to go back. I don't imagine education changing drastically any time soon.


Senior Member
Yes, definitely a crisis

I got my teaching credential in 2001. For the majority of my years I have worked as a substitute teacher. It might have been a foolish choice, but I still love working in classrooms with students of any age. Hopefully my daughters will provide housing for me by the time I'm in my 80s. I don't plan on retiring and am proud to help others every day.


Senior Member
I saw that and wondered: what's the number of people in other professions that left their field during that time?

I don't personally know anyone that left our profession--other than for (timely) retirement.