July 27, 2023

Michigan Among Nation’s Leaders in Addressing Teacher Shortage

Michigan Department of Education Press Release LANSING – Michigan is among the national leaders in taking action to address the teacher shortage, according to a report released today by the U.S. Department of Education (USED).

USED’s report “Raise the Bar:Lead The World” highlights four areas of action taken by states to address the national teacher shortage. Michigan is a national leader in enrollment growth in educator preparation programs; job recovery in education; and enhancing teacher recruitment and retention efforts. 

“This report proves that Michigan is leading the nation as one of the best states to be a teacher,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “To improve student outcomes, we must support the education professionals who help our kids thrive. Together, we have made record, bipartisan investments in our educators, from student loan repayment, retention and recruitment efforts, and stipends for student teachers. Let’s keep working together to grow the teaching profession and ensure every classroom in every school has a qualified, skilled professional at the front.” 

To meet Goal 7 of Michigan’s Top 10 Strategic Education Plan to increase the numbers of certified teachers in areas of shortage, Michigan has stepped up and shown progress in all four areas of focus by USED.

“With record investments in education by Governor Whitmer and the state legislature, including for teacher recruitment and retention, coupled with a strong commitment by schools and education partners, Michigan has become a national leader in addressing the teacher shortage,” said State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice

“Our efforts are bearing fruit and we’re making significant progress, but we still have a long way to go,” Dr. Rice said. “We are appreciative of the fact that USED has shared these national data on state and national efforts to address the teacher shortage.”

The four strategic areas identified by USED to help address the national teacher shortage are:

Progress Towards Returning to Pre-Pandemic School Staffing Levels: According to the USED report, for the period of May 2019-May 2022, Michigan’s job recovery in education was the second highest in the nation. Michigan experienced a one-half percent increase, one of only three states nationally to have a small increase in education staffing during this period. 

Improving Teacher Compensation: Michigan’s Fiscal Year 2023-24 state School Aid budget signed by Governor Whitmer last week included a record $9,608 per pupil foundation allowance, with big increases for economically disadvantaged students, students with disabilities, and English learners, as well as $63.8 million for the upcoming school year for local school districts to use to increase directly educator compensation. 

Educator Preparation Program Enrollment: Michigan has generated five years of increases in the numbers of students preparing for careers in education in educator preparation programs, the highest level since 2013-14. 

Read full article at Michigan Department of Education, Michigan Among Nation’s Leaders in Addressing Teacher Shortage.