Arizona’s teacher recruitment and retention crisis stretched into a seventh year, according to the most recent survey data from the Arizona School Personnel Administrators Association.
In a poorly-financed education system, Arizona teachers are battling low salaries, the pressures of mandatory testing and a lack of respect for their profession, making it harder for the state to entice and retain teachers, advocates say. One Paradise Valley mentoring program is trying to grow teachers at home and repair a broken pipeline.
Over the past year, growing media and policy has focused on Arizona's “teacher shortage.” Contrary to popular perception, Arizona does not have a shortage of teachers – at least not by the numbers. Our state has approximately 75,000 people holding active teacher certifications, but only 61,000 are choosing to remain in the teaching profession, according to an Arizona Department of Education [...]