Schools have the money. Why can’t they fill job openings?

Experts say that multiple factors are driving the sudden education labor shortage and that the COVID-19 health crisis has exacerbated a problem that has been festering for years.

For the first time ever, local school districts are swimming in state and federal aid and would like to hire teachers, support staff, and counselors to address learning loss and mental health needs associated with the pandemic. But they can’t seem to find people to fill the roles.

There is limited data on the current hiring climate, but experts say a confluence of factors may be driving the sudden education labor shortage. The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated a problem that’s been festering for years.

Public education stakeholders in New York have long called for action on the state’s shrinking teacher pool, and that predates the pandemic.

It’s unclear why fewer people are becoming teachers, but “some speculate that education may become less attractive as a profession due to controversies of the prior decade, such as the debates over standards, testing, and teacher evaluations,” said Robert Lowry, of the New York State Council of School Superintendents.

Read more from the Albany Times Union.

Most Popular