Don't Quit Teaching! We Need You!

The rumor is that most teachers quite teaching between their 3rd and 5th year. This is my 4th year. Don't think the thought hasn't crossed my mind well over a thousand times. It's easy for everyone around us who aren't teachers to say "You should quit. I don't know how you deal with those kids.". When we hear that we think "Yea screw this. I'm tired of dealing with paperwork, parents, and rude kids. They don't appreciate it anyway." To be completely honest you're probably right. They don't appreciate it...yet.

It's been about 8 years years since the most recent government data came out about teachers in public schools. Having seen what I've seen thus far its hard to fathom that sentiment about teaching has gotten much better. Here are some statistics from a posted study by the Department of Education that features multiple resources.

  • Of the 3,380,300 public school teachers who were teaching during the 2007-08 school year, 84.5 percent remained at the same school (“stayers”), 7.6 percent moved to a different school (“movers”), and 8.0 percent left the profession (“leavers”) during the following year.

So what...only 8% left the profession. That's 270,424 teachers that quit in 2008. When it comes to "Professional Careers" teaching is only worse than Nursing & Accounting. Yikes.

  • Teachers with 10 or fewer years of experience now constitute over 52 percent of our teaching force.

If you started teaching over the past 8 years you're probably the old man/woman on the block. Get ready to take over duties usually reserved for the old guard that have been teaching since the adoption of the Overhead Transparency Projector. Yea.

  • The percentage of teachers who say they are very or fairly likely to leave the profession has increased by 12 points since 2009, from 17% to 29%.

Just under one third of teachers is planning on leaving the profession. That combined with the fact that 52% of the teaching force has less than 10 years of experience means schools will be forced to hire unqualified people leaving our high school campuses full of teachers most likely only a few years older than many of the seniors on campus.

  • Two of three Americans would like a child of theirs to become a public school teacher, but are concerned that their local public schools are having a hard time getting good teachers. Americans say they hear more bad stories than good stories about teachers from the news media.

  • Public school teachers strongly support getting rid of incompetent teachers regardless of their seniority.

We've got a bad rap. Leaving only empowers the bad apples in the bunch. Good teaching isn't hard to come by, but many are giving up early in the fight because it isn't easy and frankly compared to most of our friends in other "Profession Careers" pays pretty poorly.

The long and short of this is if you got into teaching for the "free summers" and "all the extra breaks" you did it wrong. You'll probably be one of the teachers we see on the news. If you got into teaching because you're passionate about your subject or helping kids get better than you've got the right mindset. You're built to last. Don't the the bureaucracy of public school take that away from you. Roll with the punches. The late great Dicky Fox knows whats up. (If you havn't seen Jerry Maguire then go see it. Now.)

I started this site to speak to people my age late 20's about my experiences. We do it because we were called to teach. Sometimes you just have to laugh to keep from crying. Let's stick it out. They will all learn to appreciate you eventually...you're just probably never going to hear about it.

Schools Out.



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