02 March 2023- The pipeline of new certified teachers in Pennsylvania has plunged by 67% since 2011, and Pennsylvania issued more emergency teaching permits than new teacher certifications in 2020-21.
To make the teacher shortage worse, more teachers will be needed in the near future. Job growth in the Pre-K to 12 education field is anticipated to be 6% by 2030, requiring more than 10,000 additional teachers and educators than Pennsylvania has today.
Having fewer new teachers available can leave public and private schools with fewer candidates to fill jobs. Teacher shortages also can cause larger class sizes and require other school staff to work in classrooms, leaving students without a regular teacher.
Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) has a plan to help address the educator shortage. The State System is seeking $112 million in state funding to produce more graduates in six in-demand, high-growth jobs, including education.
PASSHE’s plan would use $56.5 million to provide direct financial relief to education students, saving each an average of $1,500. High-need students could receive an additional $5,000, for a total of $6,500 per year.
Making a degree more affordable would encourage additional people, especially those from rural and urban communities, to pursue a career educating students in Pennsylvania classrooms.
Separately, PASSHE is seeking $573.5 million, an inflationary increase of $21 million, enabling the Board of Governors to consider freezing the basic in-state undergraduate tuition rate for an unprecedented fifth consecutive year.
The Power of PASSHE
State System universities were created over a century ago solely to train teachers, and the state’s public universities are well positioned to strengthen the state’s teacher pipeline. Nearly a quarter of Pennsylvania’s education workers graduated from a PASSHE university since 2004. Education remains the second largest program in the State System, with more than 17,400 students.
For more information about the State System’s plan, visit #FundPASSHE4PA.