Teachers in Arizona are leaving their jobs at an alarming rate. The state simply cannot retain its educators because of low salaries and a lack of monetary investment in the school system.
These, and several others education shortfalls in our state, will be at the core of a forum tomorrow morning, primarily hosted by the organization, Tucson Values Teachers.
The group recently conducted a survey on the reasons teachers are quitting their positions, or moving away from Arizona altogether. Two of the biggest concerns among a group of more than 6,000 educators were low wages and feeling disrespected by the state.
Katie Rogerson, Tucson Values Teachers' interim executive director and director of marketing and outreach, as well as one of the authors of the survey, says:
The survey provided insight to the current teacher workforce crisis, and the problems go well beyond inadequate pay. Teachers also feel that they're not valued or respected by the community, that they're not being trusted to do their jobs without micromanagement, and that the time commitment has become overbearing.
The discussion, "Let's Talk Ed," is bringing together education representatives with local and national officials to talk about what is fueling this issue, and the solutions the state needs to follow to retain its K-12 teachers.
"This crisis impacts our children, our economy and our quality of life," the group says.
The forum is happening tomorrow, Jan. 7, from 7:30 to 11 a.m., at the Tucson Convention Center Grand Ballroom, 260 S. Church Ave. Tickets are $75 with breakfast included. Other supporters include Raytheon, the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, and Tucson Electric Power. For tickets visit, www.tucsonvaluesteachers.org.
Featured speakers include:
• Richard Ingersoll, University of Pennsylvania, teacher retention expert
• Ninive Calegari, CEO and Founder, the Teacher Salary Project
• Lee Woodruff, CBS broadcast personality and military advocate
• Eileen Klein, President, Arizona Board of Regents
• Pearl Chang Esau, President/CEO, Expect More Arizona
• Don Budinger, Chairman, Rodel Foundation of Arizona, Science Foundation Arizona
• Andrew Morrill, President, Arizona Education Association
• Jennifer Johnson, Executive Director, Support Our Schools AZ and a former Arizona Department of Education deputy superintendent
• Jennifer Pullen, MS, Research Economist, UA Eller College of Management and MAP Dashboard Project
• Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, City of Tucson, will welcome guests to Let's Talk Ed
• Other state and national experts in education and teacher retention
About Tucson Values Teachers
Read the Tucson Values Teachers survey:
See related PDF