Ed News: Teacher Shortages Affecting Every State As 2017-18 School Year Begins

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This week in education news, federal data shows that every state is dealing with shortages of teachers in key subject areas; the University of North Carolina in Charlotte has launched an on-campus high school for aspiring teachers; several districts and states have begun eliminating K-12 standardized tests; CA bill proposing creation of state-run STEM school draws strong support and opposition; millennials around the world are concerned about climate change; and more than 1 million students affected by Hurricane Harvey so far.

Teacher Shortages Affecting Every State As 2017-18 School Year Begins

The 2017-18 school year has started in many places across the country, and federal data shows that every state is dealing with shortages of teachers in key subject areas. Some are having trouble finding substitute teachers, too. The annual nationwide listing of areas with teacher shortages, compiled by the U.S. Education Department, shows many districts struggling to fill positions in subjects such as math, the traditional sciences, foreign language and special education, but also in reading and English language arts, history, art, music, elementary education, middle school education, career and technical education, health, and computer science. Click here to read the article featured in The Washington Post.

The Next Generation Of Teacher Prep?

The University of North Carolina in Charlotte has launched an on-campus high school for aspiring teachers. The Charlotte Teacher Early College High School opened its doors to 50 9th graders in the second week of August. Students will spend their first two years completing high school requirements, and in the remaining three years tackle general-education college requirements while training to lead classes of their own. By graduation, they will have earned up to 60 college credits that can be transferred to Cato College of Education where they can earn their teaching degrees. Click here to read the article featured in Education Week.

Science Classroom Excitement Is Infectious

Emotions can spread from person to person. Someone’s bad mood, for instance, can bring an entire crowd down. Interest in science can be catching, too, and in a good way, a new study shows. The more that students in a high school science class are into the material, the more likely an individual student will pursue a science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) career. Click here to read the article featured in Science News for Students.

States Begin Shedding Standardized Tests In K12

In just the last few months, several districts and states have eliminated tests and cut assessment time to make room for instruction and reduce stress. Concern with over-testing picked up steam around 2015, says Julie Rowland Woods, policy analyst at the Education Commission of the States. And since, a slow trickle of state policies have moved forward to mitigate it, she adds. Click here to read the article featured in District Administration.

Strong Support And Opposition To Proposed State STEM School

The California Department of Education directly runs only three schools, two for deaf children and one for the blind. Under a bill before the Legislature, it would add a fourth — specializing in math and science and serving low-income, ethnically diverse middle and high-school students in Los Angeles County. The legislation to create a state-authorized, independently managed STEM school has the support of heavyweights in high tech and higher ed. But Assembly Bill 1217 also has achieved what few bills do: unifying labor unions, school management organizations and the state Department of Finance in opposition. Click here to read the article featured in EdSource.

Millennials Around The World Are Scared Of The Same Problem — But US States Can’t Agree On How To Teach It

Millennials around the world are concerned about climate change, according to the World Economic Forum’s 2017 “Global Shapers Survey,” released Tuesday. Nearly half of the more than 31,000 survey participants, who were ages 18 to 35 in 186 countries, chose climate change as their top concern, and 78.1% said they would be willing to change their lifestyle to protect the environment. Click here to read the article by Business Insider.

There Is No Silver Bullet For Education Reform

Public educators find themselves in something of a Catch-22 situation these days. When we celebrate the great things that are going on in our schools, we are told that we are simply slaves to the status quo who don’t recognize the struggles that our system is facing. When we articulate the challenges that our schools face, there are those who are quick to jump on us for making excuses or to fault us for not abandoning our current system entirely. Click here to read the article featured in District Administration.

More Than 1 Million Students Affected By Hurricane Harvey So Far

More than a million students are now affected by the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in some way, according to the Texas Education Agency, as the remnants of the storm shifted east and its devastating effects on the education community continue. In Texas, district officials with undamaged schools are scrambling to get students quickly enrolled and back into school to avoid lost learning time. Up to 220 districts have closed at some point due to the storm. Click here to read the article featured in Education Week.

How STEM Education Can Help End Poverty

STEM education is increasing in popularity–more schools are incorporating STEM into their curriculum and making it a key part of what they teach. STEM can help students learn to think logically, improve math test scores, and give students career training. But STEM education can also help bring an end to poverty. Click here to read the article featured in Education Week.

Stay tuned for next week’s top education news stories.

The Communication, Legislative & Public Affairs (CLPA) team strives to keep NSTA members, teachers, science education leaders, and the general public informed about NSTA programs, products, and services and key science education issues and legislation. In the association’s role as the national voice for science education, its CLPA team actively promotes NSTA’s positions on science education issues and communicates key NSTA messages to essential audiences.

The mission of NSTA is to promote excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all.


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