State Superintendent warns of shrinking teacher talent pool
The problem comes from younger people not being as interested in teaching according to State Superintendent Tony Evers. He says negative political rhetoric surrounding teachers over the last few years has made people consider other higher paying fields.
State data shows a steady drop off in college students taking classes to become a teacher, and over the last two years new teacher licenses are on the decline. Evers says a shrinking talent pool means rural districts will have a harder time finding qualified teachers, and urban districts will no longer have a wide selection of high quality candidates.
Evers said, \"Wisconsin is in a pretty good place historically as far as the quality of teachers. The last thing we need to do is turn this state around and put people in the classroom because they can breathe. We need to make sure they continue to have high quality.\"
Tony Tagliavia, spokesman for Milwaukee Public Schools, wrote in an email, \"We are not seeing anything atypical when it comes to teacher recruitment this summer when compared with recent years. We, like other districts, would like to see more students entering teaching programs, as districts around Wisconsin and the nation continue to see need for teachers in math, science and bilingual education.\"
We reached out to Racine Unified School District and Kenosha Unified School District; neither of those districts got back to us with a comment.