If the United States’ public school systems weren’t having enough trouble, it may soon get worse. In fact, according to reports, it may get way worse. The vast majority of school systems are already struggling to put competent teachers in the classroom.
This coming fall, that struggle could be magnified. Teachers are deciding to retire from the classroom in droves. They cite a variety of reasons for deciding they’ve had enough. Many teachers talk about the post-pandemic classroom behavioral challenges with students.
Others are tired of the excessive workloads they’ve been forced to endure because of already problematic staff shortages. Clearly, things are going to get worse. The bulk of the teachers who indicate they will retire have 25 years or more of experience.
Many of these educators are the strongest in their respective school systems. Because of horrible governmental mandates and liberal policies, they’ve had enough. Why would they continue to endure one of the most thankless occupations when they’re not appreciated?
The data comes from the National Education Association (NEA), one of the largest teachers’ unions in the nation. The NEA represents over 3 million educators. Another survey conducted by RAND showed that nearly 1 in 4 teachers wanted to quit during the first year of the pandemic.
The majority stuck it out for the kids, but apparently, enough is enough. In an interview with The Epoch Times, Heidi Rickard summed up the seriousness of these potential departures. Rickard said, “I think people are leaving because it’s all too much. It’s a firestorm. It’s all eroding.”
There are other things contributing to the teacher exodus. Lockdowns and school closures have triggered an astonishing rise in behavioral issues in the classroom. Teachers are finding it virtually impossible to maintain control over their students.
We’re just realizing how much these students suffered. As well, school counselors are leaving their positions. This is creating an increasingly dangerous shortage of mental health counseling in our schools. A former Nebraska educator stressed how critical this problem is.
Gary Marks told The Epoch Times, “You need way more counselors when you’re having all these mental health issues.” Marks mentioned one school in Tennessee that his grandchildren attend. The Farragut school district has only two counselors for roughly 600 students.
This is not only alarming; it’s dangerous for the country. Recently, the nation witnessed what happens when mental health issues unleash themselves on society. Two mentally unstable 18-year-old young men gunned down dozens of innocent people, including school children.
NEA president Becky Pringle referred to the situation as “a five-alarm crisis.” There are also going to be far fewer teachers. In the 1970s, colleges awarded an average of 200,000 teaching degrees per year. In 2019, that number plummeted to 90,000.
Facing a crisis where we’ll need more teachers, our universities are producing fewer. This is yet another dirty secret exposing our government’s atrocious decisions when addressing the pandemic. This crisis may prove more devastating to our country than any virus.