The left’s plan to lead to a huge shortage of K-12 teachers

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Becky Pringle, NEA President

by James C. Sherlock

The left designed Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL) in large part to drive out current K-12 teachers with traditional values ​​of the profession.

Leftists hope they have set in motion a five-step process:

  1. It will be clear in a few years that the plan has worked. With Virginia already facing a teacher shortage, VDOE continues to promote CRT, SEL, and other progressive ideals such as the colossal reach of a transgender child policy that converts appropriate accommodations into recruiting.
  2. Working conditions will continue to deteriorate for those:
    • who want to teach children reading, writing, math, science and other academic disciplines without being forced into service in loco parentis to train social justice warriors in violation of their personal standards and those of most parents;
    • who wish to protect their personal values ​​and dignity in the profession they have chosen.
  3. The state will be shocked – shocked – that there aren’t enough teachers to staff schools.
  4. Virginia will continue with her ongoing reductions in licensure qualifications. (Example: For the Middle School Science Praxis test, the Educational Testing Service, after an exhaustive search, recommended a cut-off score of 152 corresponding to a raw score of 61 out of 100. The Virginia Board of Education recently authorized a score cutoff of 147, corresponding to a raw score of 57 out of 100.)
  5. Nothing will stop the tide. President Biden will be asked to declare a national emergency and ask for a trillion dollars to increase the number of teachers without, this time, looking for the root causes.

It’s an easy assessment of what the left wants, especially because it admits it. Most radical progressives are not stupid, they are just plain wrong. These five steps are exactly what they are looking for.

They prioritize chasing teachers they disapprove of rather than the needs of anyone’s children.

Eggs and omelets. Long live the revolution.

The National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) in Virginia

Becky Pringle and Randi Weingarten head the two largest teachers’ unions in the United States. They probably want more teachers and their dues.

But this is not their first priority. On the NEA website:

NEA President Becky Pringle is a fierce warrior for social justice, an advocate for educator rights, a strong advocate for all students and communities of color, and a valued and respected voice in the field of education. education.

Read the rest of Ms. Pringle’s philosophy and background on this same webpage. Not one only one word on the working conditions of teachers.

Not one.

Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers has worked for years to position himself proudly and loudly to the left of the NEA. It has become more and more difficult to do.

The NEA is the parent organization of the VEA. AFT is investing heavily in unionizing more teachers, especially in Northern Virginia, to be their contract agent if those jurisdictions allow union negotiations with local governments.

Shortage of teachers

A pre-COVID report (2019) showed an acceleration of retirements of other departures from the profession before increasing pressure on the supply of teachers by the VDOE and the academic left.

The shortage of teachers was linked to the initial supply:

“Between the 2008-2009 and 2015-2016 school years, a 15.4% drop in the number of educational diplomas awarded and a 27.4% drop in the number of people who followed a preparation for teaching program.

The NEA observed the same trends:

“The annual loss of effective teachers in public schools is devastating to the US economy and widens the achievement gap. The statistics on turnover among new teachers are startling. About 30 percent of all
new recruits leave the classroom within three years. In urban neighborhoods, the numbers are worse; nearly 50 percent of newcomers flee the profession during their first five years of teaching.

Causes – NEA version

The NEA, of course, hinted at a unique and self-serving assessment of the causes:

“1) a lack of clarity or standards regarding the definition of teacher leadership and associated skills, knowledge and practices;

2) flat career continuums that offer accomplished teachers few opportunities for growth in skills, responsibilities and remuneration;

3) systems that do not offer new roles and increased compensation to those who have voluntarily taken steps to improve their practice and leadership skills;

4) a unique career path that does not take into account the diverse interests and abilities of educators, and;

5) school systems that do not provide opportunities for teachers to be successful, to collaborate with colleagues, to take formal leadership roles or to contribute to the decision-making process at school and district level.

It’s not at all clear what they mean in anything on this list except asking for more money. It’s always clear.

The NEA never specifies which school systems they find without clarity or standards, with flat career continuums and / or denying teachers opportunities for skill development and opportunities for success.

Because there is none. Name one.

They simply assert these failures and list them as the causes of the teacher shortage.

Growing pressure on leftist teacher supply

The NEA says nothing about the increasingly ceaseless progressive demands of teachers, left-wing changes in curricula and teacher assessments, attacks on the personal values ​​and dignity of many, or a growing lack of motivated classroom discipline. by a search for “fairness” in the sanctions against bad behavior.

The NEA discourages the use of School Research Officers (SROs) in schools. Richmond Public Schools (RPS) seem to want to exclude them. Perhaps the NEA and RPS should interview teachers in schools with ORS.

Progressives can approve of policies, but they cannot deny that they put additional pressure on the supply of teachers.

This is, after all, the intention.

The NEA on the national control of education school accreditations

The NEA, of course, prescribes national monitoring of education programs.

The NEA believes that teacher preparation programs should be approved at two levels: at the state level through an agency such as a professional standards board and at the national level through a national body. accreditation.

The left wants to use the accreditation standards of progressive education schools to shut down education schools like that at Liberty University, a Christian university that produces far more teachers than any other undergraduate education program in Virginia.

Even more pressure on the offer.

NEA Position (s) on Vocational and Technical Education

With Olympic flexibility, the NEA defines as standards and program objectives, listed consecutively:

“The state has developed a policy that requires alignment between program content and rigorous standards that meet the needs of students of all abilities, linguistic and cultural backgrounds in all academic subjects.

“100% of secondary school students complete all preparatory courses for college in
mathematics and science … College preparatory courses are Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Geometry, Trigonometry, Calculus, Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

Elsewhere on their site,

NEA is committed to strengthening vocational and technical education (CTE) programs.

The NEA therefore has a firm position on CTE and the “needs of students of all abilities, from all linguistic and cultural backgrounds”:

College preparation for all and CTE for many.

What will be the effect on the supply of CTE instructors of their clear second-class status in the teacher union hierarchy?

Bottom line, courtesy of the US Department of Education

Finally, the heart of the problem of teacher shortages is explained by the US Department of Education. He annually projects the future supply of primary and secondary teachers, but warns:

“The projections do not take into account possible changes in the number of teachers due to the effects of government policies.”

Good call.


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