Introduction Statistics regarding the teaching profession are alarming. Over the next ten years, American school systems will need to hire an average of 200,000 K-12 teachers; in the urban and rural areas with high rates of poverty, the figure jumps to a need to hire 700,000 teachers (Fideler & Haselkorn, 1999). The estimates regarding new teachers are even more alarming. · The annual attrition rate for beginning teachers is twice that of more experienced teachers (Odell and Ferraro, 1992). · Fideler & Haselkorn (1999) note that 9.3% of new teachers leave before they complete the first year of teaching in public schools. · In the 1990-1991 school year 15% of all schools, both public and private, could not fill teaching vacancies with qualified teachers and had to resort to substitutes (National Center for Education Statistics, 1997). Trial by fire for the beginning teacher is a way of life for those novices relegated to large urban schools throughout the country. Teachers who feel overwhelmed by the system, who feel isolated in their autonomy, and who work in an environment that is dull and lifeless will be bound for other systems, one where employees can feel their work has value.
The High School Journal – University of North Carolina Press
Published: Jan 10, 2002