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What’s that they say about an ounce of prevention vs. a pound of cure? Or plugging the hole in your bucket before trying to fill it?
There’s a reason for these sage proverbs: avoiding a problem — like teacher turnover — is better than having to fix it.
How much is teacher turnover costing your district?
Find out below
With more than half of teachers leaving the profession in their first five years and a diminishing number of teachers entering the profession at all, education leaders across the US are grappling with an urgent question: Once you’ve recruited the best, what can you do to retain that talent?
As students face intense challenges — increasing cases of anxiety and depression, threats to safety at school, and more — teachers are tasked with supporting their students through it all. As students with disabilities are increasingly given the opportunity to participate in general education classrooms, teachers have a wider range of levels and abilities to consider as they plan lessons.
This increasing pressure on teachers is compounded by tight district budgets. Schools already spend, on average, about 80–85% of their budgets on salaries and benefits. As an administrator, that means that as you look to retain your best talent, especially for positions in special education, math, and science, you have to get intentional and creative.
The good news: You can take steps to reduce turnover, improve instruction, and impact student achievement at the same time.
Here’s how several districts are providing that supportive leadership at every stage of teachers’ careers.
START AT THE BEGINNING: HIRING & ONBOARDING
"It all starts with human capital. If you select the right people, and if you have a strong process in place to select those people and to onboard them and mentor and support them along the way, then it’s much easier to put a personalized professional learning culture in place and trust your people to not only do some self-directed learning, but to teach within the organization."
THROUGHOUT A TEACHER’S CAREER: ONGOING SUPPORT
"Teacher burnout, it’s like a slow leak. You see it happening, but how do you support these teachers to make sure they get rejuvenated, and that every summer it’s not, ‘Am I going to retire this year? Am I going to leave this year?'"
UNDERNEATH IT ALL: CULTURE
"To anyone who says, ‘This won’t work,’ I would say you’re wrong. Because every one of us likes to be listened to and to feel like, ‘I am part of something bigger than myself.'"
Resources for Continuous Improvement
Looking for ideas to help you engage, grow and retain your teachers and staff? Our Resources for Continuous Improvement page is overflowing with eBooks, case studies and interactive content to support you in your work.