Utah school districts face teacher shortage

Utah school districts face teacher shortage

PROVO, UT – Utah school districts are struggling to find teachers, according to state education officials.

The desire to make a difference in children’s lives is what draws many teachers to the profession. A fifth-grade teacher, Calli Hodson, once said that in the classroom teachers discover the amount of work they do is much more than the pay they receive.

A report from the Utah Education Policy Center found that more than half of public school teachers who started their jobs in 2008 left by 2015. Those we spoke to said the reason a teacher may leave the profession can range. Other reasons mentioned included intense focus on standardized testing and simply being burned out.

“It’s a lot of work that people don’t actually see,” stated Hodson. “I think I spend most of my life inside of school and outside of school working on stuff for my classroom.”

Utah lawmakers are trying to entice more individuals to come to the classroom. The law now allows individuals with professional experience to easily obtain a teaching license. Aspiring teachers are no longer required to have a degree specifically in teaching.

Hodson said programs such as this concern her. She feels professional experience alone can’t give you all the skills you need to teach, such as classroom management.

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