Opinion
Recruitment & Retention Letter to the Editor

The Pandemic Isn’t the Only Reason For School Staffing Shortages

October 05, 2021 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

I must add another explanation to the list of reasons for school staffing shortages (“No Bus Drivers, Custodians, or Subs. What’s Really Behind Schools’ Staffing Shortages?,” Sept. 20, 2021).

I am a retired federal scientist with more than nine years of volunteer science teaching in primary, secondary, and higher education. In my state at least, state certification requirements are a barrier to otherwise qualified candidate teachers. I recently attempted to enroll in a master’s of arts in teaching program in Oregon only to be rebuffed (no explanation given).

If states are truly serious about these staffing shortages, they will need to dig deeper than just superficial-level explanations—there is more to consider than just the current shortage the pandemic has created. Burnout, pay, and more issues that existed before the pandemic have an impact, too.

Bill Knight
Educator
Bend, Ore.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the October 06, 2021 edition of Education Week as The Pandemic Isn’t the Only Reason For School Staffing Shortages

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Privacy & Security Webinar
K-12 Cybersecurity in the Real World: Lessons Learned & How to Protect Your School
Gain an expert understanding of how school districts can improve their cyber resilience and get ahead of cybersecurity challenges and threats.
Content provided by Microsoft
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Trauma-Informed Schools 101: Best Practices & Key Benefits
Learn how to develop a coordinated plan of action for addressing student trauma and
fostering supportive, healthy environments.
Content provided by Crisis Prevention Institute
Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Recruitment & Retention Schools Don't Embrace Flexible Work: Ideas From 3 Superintendents on How to Do It
Schools' traditional schedules and practices can be adapted to support some flexible work options, even for teachers.
5 min read
Image of a clock, calendar, and a pencil.
Tatomm/iStock/Getty
Recruitment & Retention Foreign Language Teachers Are in Short Supply. How to Find, Attract, and Retain Them
Start with competitive pay and respect for their unique skills, an expert says.
4 min read
language blue
Getty
Recruitment & Retention Letter to the Editor Schools Are Choosing Money Over Experience. Educators Are Fed Up
A special education instructional aide shares her frustration with the lack of appreciation for and low pay of her position.
1 min read
Education Week opinion letters submissions
Gwen Keraval for Education Week
Recruitment & Retention Opinion How My District Overcame Our Dire Bus Driver Shortage
Now, the district is applying the lessons to support staff in classrooms and cafeterias, writes Superintendent Mervin B. Daugherty
Mervin B. Daugherty
5 min read
Photo of school bus with help wanted sign.
<b>F. Sheehan/Education Week and iStock/Getty</b>