TURNOVER OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS: NEW RESEARCH ON THE EXTENT AND IMPACT OF EXIT ATTRITION, TRANSFER TO GENERAL EDUCATION, AND SCHOOL TRANSFER 1

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1 TURNOVER OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS: NEW RESEARCH ON THE EXTENT AND IMPACT OF EXIT ATTRITION, TRANSFER TO GENERAL EDUCATION, AND SCHOOL TRANSFER 1 Breakout Session Presented at the 2005 OSEP Project Directors Conference Washington, DC July 27, 2005 [Edited: September 8, 2005] Erling E. Boe, Ph.D. Professor of Education Lynne H. Cook, Ph.D. Professor of Special Education Department of Special Education California State University, Northridge and Robert J. Sunderland, M.S. Research Associate Center for Research and Evaluation in Social Policy Graduate School of Education University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA Support for this research was provided by a grant (Award Number H0324C020002) from the Research and Innovation to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities Program (Field Initiated Research Projects, CFDA Number: C), Research to Practice Division, Office of Special Education Programs, the U.S. Department of Education, to Erling E. Boe at the University of Pennsylvania; and by the Center for Research and Evaluation in Social Policy, the Graduate School of Education of the University of Pennsylvania. [OSEP\OSEP-Handouts4.doc]

2 CONTENTS Background Method... 8 Quantifying Exit Attrition of All Teachers. 10 Reasons for Exit Attrition of All Teachers Exit Attrition of Beginning Teachers by Amount of Preparation 29 Quantifying Exit Attrition of Special Education Teachers Reasons for Exit Attrition of Special Education Teachers 37 Switching of Special and General Education Teachers School Transfer of Special Education Teachers Turnover and Retention of Special Education Teachers.. 54 Demand and Supply of Special Education Teachers Sources of Supply of Special Education Teachers Certification of Entering Special Education Teachers References

3 WHY IS THERE INTEREST IN THE TOPICS OF TEACHER 1. SUPPLY, 2. DEMAND, 3. QUALITY, AND 4. TURNOVER? BECAUSE OF A VERY PRACTICAL PROBLEM CHALLENGING TO POLICY AND PRACTICE: THE SERIOUS AND CHRONIC SHORTAGE OF QUALIFIED SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS! 3

4 DEFINITION OF TEACHER TURNOVER: ANY YEAR-TO-YEAR CHANGE IN A TEACHER S POSITION 1. CHANGING SCHOOLS 2. CHANGING MAIN TEACHING FIELD 3. LEAVING TEACHING EMPLOYMENT FACT: THERE IS A HIGH LEVEL OF TEACHER TURNOVER EVERY YEAR 4

5 WHY IS TEACHER TURNOVER A PROBLEM? 1. LOSS OF MANY QUALIFIED TEACHERS TO A. ANOTHER SCHOOL, OR B. ANOTHER FIELD (e.g., FROM SPECIAL EDUCATION TO GENERAL EDUCATION), OR C. THE RANKS OF EMPLOYED TEACHERS. 2. DISCONTINUITY IN SCHOOL FUNCTIONING A. INTERRUPTS PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT B. LOSS OF INSTITUTIONAL MEMORY, AND C. DISRUPTION OF STAFF COHESION. 3. HIGH FINANCIAL COSTS ASSOCIATED WITH A. PREPARATION OF REPLACEMENT TEACHERS B. RECRUITMENT OF REPLACEMENT TEACHERS, & C. INDUCTION OF REPLACEMENT TEACHERS. 5

6 GOALS FOR THIS SESSION 1. TO PROVIDE NEW NATIONAL-LEVEL RESEARCH FINDINGS REGARDING TEACHER TURNOVER AND SUPPLY 2. TO PROVIDE ANALYSES AND INTERPRETATIONS OF THESE RESEARCH FINDINGS 3. TO IDENTIFY IMPLICATIONS OF THESE RESEARCH FINDINGS FOR GUIDING POLICY AND PRACTICE RELEVANT TO ADDRESSING THE SHORTAGE OF QUALIFIED SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS. FOR SESSION PARTICIPANTS QUESTIONS, COMMENTS, AND DISCUSSION ARE WELCOME THROUGHOUT THE SESSION. 6

7 SOME COMMON TEACHER TURNOVER TERMINOLOGY TYPE OF TURNOVER REFERRED TO AS COMPARED WITH Exit Attrition Leaving (leavers) vs. Continuing Teaching Field Transfer Switching (switchers) vs. Remaining School Transfer Moving (movers) vs. Staying CLEAR DISTINCTIONS MINIMIZE CONFUSION, SUCH AS: 1. Four out of every ten special educators entering the field leave special education before their fifth year of teaching (p. 1). 2. Four out of every ten special educators entering special education have left [the profession] before their fifth year (p. 7). From CEC s Bright Futures..., (2000). 7

8 METHOD 1. Data Sources: a. Public School Teacher Questionnaires (PSTQ) of the Schools and Staffing Surveys (SASS), NCES, USDE b. Teacher Follow-Up Surveys (TFS) one year following the Schools and Staffing Surveys, NCES, USDE c. SASS/TFS Survey Years: , , & Survey Design: National Probability Samples of Teachers 3. Sample Sizes of Public School Teachers: a. Sample in PSTQs Per Survey Year (1) Special Education Teachers: N = 5,000 (2) General Education Teachers: N = 39,000 b. Sample in TFSs Per Survey Year (1) Stayers: N = ~ 2,000 (continue in same school) (2) Movers: N = ~ 1,100 (transfer to different school) (3) Switchers: N = ~ 500 (switch to different cognate area) (4) Leavers: N = ~ 1,700 (attrition from teaching) 4. Questionnaire Response Rates: 83-90% range 5. Every statistic presented is a national estimate based on a sample. Therefore, every statistic is subject to sampling error measured by its standard error. Thus, every statistic is only a good approximation. 8

9 TEACHER DEFINITION ANY INDIVIDUAL WHO REPORTED BEING EMPLOYED EITHER FULL-TIME OR PART-TIME AT A PUBLIC OR PRIVATE SCHOOL WITH A MAIN TEACHING ASSIGNMENT IN ANY GRADE(S) K-12, INCLUDING ITINERANT AND LONG-TERM SUBSTITUTE TEACHERS. SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER A TEACHER WHO REPORTED HIS/HER MAIN TEACHING ASSIGNMENT AS ANY ONE OF 15 LISTED TEACHING SPECIALIZATIONS WITHIN SPECIAL EDUCATION. NOTE: EXCLUDES GENERAL EDUCATION TEACHERS WHO TEACH CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES. GENERAL EDUCATION TEACHER ALL K-12 TEACHERS NOT CLASSIFIED AS A SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER. 9

10 CONCERNS ABOUT TEACHER TURNOVER The National Commission on Teaching and America s Future (2003): Our inability to support high quality teaching is driven not by too few teachers coming in, but by too many going out, that is, by staggering rates of teacher turnover (p. 21). Bonnie Billingsley, JSE (2004) Although the causes of the shortage problem are complex, teacher attrition is clearly a major contributor (p. 39). To what extent are these concerns a legitimate cause for alarm? FOR ALL K-12 PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS, EXTENSIVE EVIDENCE WILL BE PROVIDED FOR EXIT ATTRITION. 10

11 10% Exit Attrition * Annual Attrition Percent 8% 6% 4% 2% 5.1% 6.6% 7.4% 0% School Year Figure 1: Annual percentage of public school teachers who leave teaching employment by school year. *The differences among school years in annual attrition percent are statistically significant (p<.001). Data sources: , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 11

12 How do these teacher attrition percentages compare with those of other professions? 12

13 1991 Non-Business Health Care Public Teacher Private Teacher 1994 Non-Business Health Care Corporate Attrition 12% Corporate Attrition 16% Corp. Attr.=8% Tr.=4% 12% Corporate Attrition 18% Corporate Attrition 12% Corporate Attrition 16% Public Teacher Private Teacher 1997 Non-Business Health Care 2000 Non-Business Health Care Corp. Attr. = 10% Tr.=4% 14% Corporate Attrition 18% Corporate Attrition 14% Corporate Attrition 17% Corporate Attrition 16% Corporate Attrition 20% Public Teacher Private Teacher Corp. Attr.=12% Tr.=3% 15% Corporate Attrition 21% Annual Corporate Attrition Percent Figure 2. Annual corporate attrition percent for teachers in comparison with two other occupation fields. Corporate attrition is defined by leaving an employer (excluding reductions in force), such as a corporation or school district. For public school teachers, transfer between schools within a public district (Tr.) is shown as an increment of turnover to corporate attrition. Teacher data from Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Other occupation data from the Employer Surveys by the Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 13

14 Figure 3. Among bachelor s degree recipients who worked full time in April 1994, percentage who worked in the same occupation category in April 1997, by April 1994 occupation. Health Occupations K-12 teachers (public and private) Law enforcement occupations, military Engineers, scientists, lab and research assistants Business support, financial services occupations* Editors, writers, and artists* Legal professionals and legal support occupations* Other instructors and human services occupations* Computer and technical occupations* Sales and service occupations* Business owners and other managers* Blue collar occupations* Clerical occupations* Three-Year Retention Percent *Statistically significantly different from K-12 teachers at the.05 level. Source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Baccalaureate and Beyond Longitudinal Study, Second Follow-up (B7H:93/97), Data Analysis System. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 14

15 THUS, AVAILABLE EVIDENCE SHOWS THAT TEACHER ATTRITION IS NOT HIGHER THAN THAT OF OTHER OCCUPATIONS. IN FACT, TEACHER ATTRITION MAY ACTUALLY BE LOWER THAN IN OTHER OCCUPATIONS. ATTRITION IS COMMON IN THE WORLD OF WORK, AND SOME OF IT IS CONSTRUCTIVE. NONETHELESS, THERE ARE CLAIMS THAT THE ATTRITION OF BEGINNING TEACHERS IS EXTRAORDINARILY HIGH! The National Commission on Teaching and America s Future (2003): APPROXIMATELY A THIRD OF AMERICA S TEACHERS LEAVE TEACHING SOMETIME DURING THEIR FIRST THREE YEARS OF TEACHING; ALMOST HALF MAY LEAVE DURING THE FIRST FIVE YEARS (p. 24). 15

16 EXIT ATTRITION During First 5 Years by Sector Public Full-Time 38% Part-Time 53% Total 39% Private Full-Time 86% Part-Time 146% Total 97% All Teachers Full-Time 46% Part-Time 79% Total 50% 0% 25% 50% 75% 100% 125% 150% Five-Year Attrition Percent Figure 4. Sum of the annual percentages of teachers who leave teaching employment after one though five years of teaching experience, by sector and employment status. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 16

17 Annual Attrition Percent 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Private Teachers Public Teachers Years of Teaching Figure 5. Annual percentages of public and private school teachers who leave teaching employment after each of five years of teaching experience. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 17

18 THUS, ESTIMATES OF THE ATTRITION OF BEGINNING TEACHERS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS ARE INFLATED BY THE INCLUSION OF PRIVATE SCHOOL AND PART-TIME TEACHERS. THE ACTUAL ATTRITION OF FULL-TIME PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS IS THEREBY OBFUSCATED. ATTRITION RATES FOR FULL-TIME PUBLIC TEACHERS ARE: 1. 25% IN FIRST THREE YEARS (NOT 33%) 2. 38% IN FIRST FIVE YEARS (NOT ALMOST 50%) 3. 30% PER FIVE YEARS FOR ALL TEACHERS [Percentages for full-time public school teachers.] 18

19 ANOTHER CONCERN HAS BEEN EXPRESSED ABOUT AN APPARENT INCREASE IN THE TURNOVER OF BEGINNING TEACHERS. Johnson, et al. in Who Stays in Teaching and Why (2005). Turnover rates among new teachers are rapidly increasing (p.1). OUR ATTRITION ANALYSIS FOR BEGINNING PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS IN THEIR FIRST FIVE YEARS OF EXPERIENCE SHOWS THE FOLLOWING TREND: % % % 19

20 To what extent is teacher attrition due to reasons directly amenable to intervention by improved policy and practice intended to improve retention, as distinguished from personal and other reasons having little to do with working conditions and satisfaction with the teaching profession? 20

21 Table 1. Main Reasons for Exit Attrition of Public School Teachers: National Estimates of Leavers for Three School Years Combined ( , , and ) Nationally Estimated Leavers Per Year Main Reason for Leaving Number Col % SE % Annual Attrition Percent I. Escape Teaching A. Other Career 16, % 0.8 % 0.63 % B. Better Salary 12, % 0.7 % 0.45 % C. Take Courses for Other Career 2, % 0.2 % 0.08 % D. Dissatisfaction with Teaching 11, % 0.8 % 0.44 % Subtotal 43, % 1.4 % 1.60 % II. Professional Development A. Take Courses for Education Career 9, % 0.9 % 0.35 % B. Sabbatical 5, % 0.5 % 0.20 % Subtotal 14, % 1.0 % 0.55 % III. Personal A. Family or Personal 28, % 1.1 % 1.05 % B. Pregnancy/Child Bearing 21, % 1.1 % 0.81 % Subtotal 50, % 1.5 % 1.86 % IV. Involuntary A. Health 8, % 0.8 % 0.31 % B. Staffing Action 7, % 0.7 % 0.28 % Subtotal 15, % 1.1 % 0.59 % V. Retirement 46, % 1.3 % 1.74 % Total Leavers per Year 170, % 6.34 % Note. Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Col. % = percentages of nationally estimated leavers per year. SE% = standard errors of the column percentages. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 21

22 EXIT ATTRITION Reason by Years of Experience Escape Teaching a. 1-3 Years b Years c Years d Years 2.9% 1.8% 1.2% 1.1% Personal Reasons a. 1-3 Years b Years c Years d Years 0.6% 1.2% 3.2% 2.8% Retirement a. 1-3 Years b Years c Years d Years 0.1% 0.1% 0.8% 7.8% Total Attrition a. 1-3 Years b Years c Years d Years 3.9% 5.8% 8.7% 10.6% 0% 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% Annual Attrition Percent Figure 6. Annual percentage of public school teachers who leave teaching employment as a function of main reasons for leaving and years of teaching experience. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 22

23 EXIT ATTRITION Reason by Full vs Part Time Escape Teaching Full-Time 1.4% Part-Time 3.5% Prof Development Full-Time 0.5% Part-Time 1.4% Personal Full-Time 1.8% Part-Time 2.2% Job Action Full-Time Part-Time 0.6% 0.8% Retirement Full-Time 1.8% Part-Time 1.1% 0% 1% 2% 3% 4% Annual Attrition Percent Figure 7. Annual percentage of public school teachers who leave teaching employment as a function of main reasons for leaving and employment status. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow- Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 23

24 EXIT ATTRITION Reason by Survey Year 1. Escape Teaching * Year 1991 Year 1994 Year Personal Year 1991 Year 1994 Year % 24% 28% 27% 31% 30% 3. Professional Development Year 1991 Year 1994 Year % 9% 8% 4. Health / Staffing Action Year 1991 Year 1994 Year % 8% 13% 5. Retirement Year 1991 Year 1994 Year % 27% 26% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% Percentage of Total Leavers Figure 8. Percentages of all public school teachers who leave teaching employment as a function of five main reasons for leaving and school year. For each of three school years separately, percentages sum to 100%. *For escape teaching, the differences among the three school years in the percentage of total leavers are statistically significant (p<.001). Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 24

25 WHAT DEMOGRAPHIC AND QUALIFICATION VARIABLES ARE PREDICTIVE OF TEACHERS WHO SEEK TO ESCAPE? THAT IS, TO WHAT EXTENT DO TEACHERS WITH ESPECIALLY VALUED CHARACTERISTICS, SUCH AS MINORITY AND FULLY-CERTIFIED TEACHERS, SEEK TO ESCAPE COMPARED WITH THOSE WITH LESS VALUED CHARACTERISTICS? 25

26 Table 2. Teacher Demographic, Qualification, and Field Variables Predictive of Escape from Teaching as the Main Reason for Leaving as a Function of Years of Teaching Experience: National Estimates for Public School Teachers for Three School Years Combined ( , , and ). Name Teacher Predicter Variable Level 1-3 Years Experience Escape Percent a Odds Ratio b 4 or More Years Experience Escape Percent a Odds Ratio b Demographics Gender Male 6.3% 2.40* 1.9% 1.31 Female 2.7% Ref. 1.4% Ref. Race/Ethnicity Black 1.3% c 0.34* 2.1% 1.34 Hispanic 6.0% c % 0.45* Asian/N.A. 2.0% c % 0.53* White 3.7% Ref. 1.6% Ref. Age > 50 Years 3.1% c % 0.36* 30 to 50 Years 2.8% % 0.42* < 30 Years 4.2% Ref. 3.6% Ref. Qualification Certification Full 2.5% 0.32* 1.6% 1.13 Part 7.4% Ref. 1.4% Ref. Assignment In-Field 3.8% % 0.86 Out-of-Field 3.5% Ref. 1.7% Ref. Degree Teacher Ed 2.9% 0.52* 1.5% 0.97 Other 5.5% Ref. 1.6% Ref. Teaching Field Field General Ed 3.6% % 0.57* Special Ed 3.9% Ref. 2.5% Ref. Note. Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Col. % = percentages of nationally estimated leavers per year who wish to escape from teaching. a Escape percent based on sum of teachers who stay in the same school plus teachers who leave to escape from teaching. b Unadjusted (i.e., bivariate) odds ratios predicting escape teaching (coded 1) versus staying in the same school (coded 0). The odds ratio is defined as the chances that teachers at a particular level of a predictor variable leave to escape teaching divided by the chances that teachers at the reference level (Ref.) of the predictor variable escape teaching. If the chances are greater than the chances for the reference level, the odds ratio is greater than 1.00; if less, the odds ratio is less than 1:00; if equal, the odds ratio is 1:00. (*p<.05, **p<.01, ***p<.001). c Sample size (n) less than 30. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 26

27 CONCLUSIONS: ANALYSES OF MAIN REASONS FOR LEAVING TEACHING [pertaining to public school teachers] GIVEN THE PRESENTERS PERSPECTIVE THAT INITIATIVES TO IMPROVE TEACHER RETENTION SHOULD TARGET THOSE WHO SEEK TO ESCAPE FROM TEACHING BECAUSE IMPROVED RETENTION POLICIES AND PRACTICES MIGHT BE MOST EFFECTIVE IN COMPARISON WITH TARGETING LEAVING FOR PERSONAL OR OTHER REASONS, IT IS APPARENT THAT: 1. OF THE 170,000 TEACHERS WHO LEAVE ANNUALLY, ONLY 43,000 SEEK TO ESCAPE FROM TEACHING. MANY OF THESE SHOULD LEAVE BECAUSE THEY ARE UNQUALIFIED OR NOT WELL SUITED TO THE TEACHING PROFESSION. 2. THE TEACHER ATTRITION PERCENTAGE IS ALREADY MODERATE IN COMPARISON WITH OTHER OCCUPATIONS. 3. THUS, THERE IS LITTLE OR NO POTENTIAL TO DRASTICALLY REDUCE ATTRITION JUST THROUGH IMPROVED RETENTION OF THOSE WHO SEEK TO ESCAPE FROM TEACHING. E.G., ONE-THIRD IMPROVEMENT IN RETENTION WOULD REDUCE ATTRITION BY ONLY 14,000 OF THE ANNUAL TOTAL OF 170,000 LEAVERS. 4. FURTHERMORE, BEGINNING TEACHERS WHO SEEK TO ESCAPE HOLD LESSER QUALIFICATIONS: THOSE NOT-FULLY CERTIFIED AND WITHOUT EDUCATION DEGREES ARE MORE LIKELY TO LEAVE BECAUSE THEY SEEK TO ESCAPE TEACHING. 27

28 CONCLUSIONS CONTINUED: 5. IN SPITE OF EFFORTS TO IMPROVE WORKING CONDITIONS FOR TEACHERS DURING THE DECADE OF THE 1990s, THE RATE OF TEACHERS SEEKING TO ESCAPE HAS INCREASED. 6. ESCAPING FROM TEACHING IS NOT THE PREDOMINANT REASON FOR LEAVING BY BEGINNING TEACHERS; PERSONAL REASONS ARE AT LEAST AS IMPORTANT. 7. RETENTION COULD BE IMPROVED BY CONVERTING PART- TIME TEACHING POSITIONS TO FULL-TIME. 28

29 RELATIONSHIP OF THE RETENTION OF BEGINNING TEACHERS TO TEACHER PREPARATION IN RECENT YEARS, USDE HAS BEEN HIGHLY CRITICAL OF TEACHER PREPARATION, ESPECIALLY TRADITIONAL TEACHER PREPARATION. Conclusions by the former Secretary of Education Rodney Paige: Inadequacies of traditional teacher preparation have historically prevented schools of education from achieving their full potential as sources of highquality teachers (USDE, 2003, p. 21). Instead, best available research shows that solid verbal ability and content knowledge are what matters most (USDE, 2002, p. 9). However, the Secretary s position disregards the possible effect of teacher preparation on retention. 29

30 EXIT ATTRITION of Beginning Teachers by Amount of Teacher Preparation Amount of Preparation * Extensive 8.8% Some 11.0% None 17.8% 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% Annual Attrition Percent Figure 9. Annual percentage of beginning teachers in public schools who leave teaching employment with one to five years of experience as a function of three amounts of teacher preparation. * The differences among the three amounts of teacher preparation in annual attrition percent are statistically significant (p=.01). Data from the Teacher Follow-Up Survey, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 30

31 COMPARISONS OF TEACHER TURNOVER IN SPECIAL AND GENERAL EDUCATION CEC s Bright Futures..., (2000). Many special educators leave the profession each year. They leave at almost twice the rate of their general education colleagues. (p. 7) James McLeskey s Forward in Billingsley (2005): These [turnover] statistics reveal an extraordinarily high level of instability in the special education teaching profession, resulting in teachers moving in and out of special education classrooms at a disquieting rate (p. xvii). To what extent are these conclusions supported by more extensive and recent evidence? For special and general education teachers separately, analyses of teacher turnover will be provided for: A. Leaving teaching employment B. Changes in teaching assignments between fields C. Migration between schools 31

32 Percent of Teachers Leaving 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 5.2% 4.9% Exit Attrition * Special Education 6.6% General Education 6.3% 8.7% 7.2% 0% School Year Figure 10. Annual percentage of public school teachers who leave teaching employment in special education and general education by school year. *The difference between special and general education in annual attrition percent during school year is not statistically significant. Data source: , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 32

33 Table 3. School Transfer and Exit Attrition of Public School Teachers for Eight Cognate Areas: National Estimates of the Number and Percentage of Teachers by Turnover Status Following Three School Years Combined Turnover Status for Three Years Combined ( , , ) Cognate Area a Statistic b Stayers Movers Leavers Total English Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 694,384 57,118 47, ,850 Row % 86.9% 7.2% 5.9% 100% Mathematics Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 473,468 42,279 39, ,486 Row % 85.2% 7.6% 7.2% 100% Science Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 424,523 34,843 32, ,103 Row % 86.3% 7.1% 6.7% 100% Social Science Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 404,929 20,050 30, ,543 Row % 88.9% 4.4% 6.7% 100% Arts/ Music Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 452,970 53,189 38, ,049 Row % 83.1% 9.8% 7.1% 100% Foreign Language Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 180,863 14,782 9, ,585 Row % 88.0% 7.2% 4.8% 100% Physical/ Health Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 418,534 27,653 18, ,733 Education Row % 90.1% 6.0% 4.0% 100% Bilingual/ ESL Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 92,206 14,031 6, ,512 Row % 82.0% 12.5% 5.6% 100% Vocational/ Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 351,318 24,066 26, ,379 Business Education Row % 87.3% 6.0% 6.7% 100% Other General Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 350,434 26,378 35, ,731 Education Row % 84.9% 6.4% 8.7% 100% Elementary Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 2,373, , ,073 2,743,336 Education Row % 86.5% 7.2% 6.3% 100% Special Education Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 744,455 83,035 59, ,257 Row % 83.9% 9.4% 6.7% 100% Total Teachers Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 6,961, , ,793 8,075,563 Row % 86.2% 7.4% 6.4% 100% Note. Data from the , , and Schools and Staffing Surveys and the , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, National Center for Education Statistics, USDE. a Cognate area for the three years combined ( , , and ) prior to turnover. b Nationally weighted estimates (Nat l Estimate/Year) for three years combined: reported as the mean number of teachers of the total full-time and part-time teachers combined at the K-12 levels. Totals may not sum exactly due to rounding. Row % = percentages of nationally estimated teachers of the row total of nationally estimated teachers. c Other general education includes teaching fields that are not subject matter specific: basic skills and remedial education, gifted, military science, and all other. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 33

34 NOT ONLY IS THE ATTRITION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS NOT SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER THAN THAT OF ALL GENERAL EDUCATION TEACHERS, IT IS COMPARABLE WITH THAT IN MANY COGNATE AREAS OF GENERAL EDUCATION: ANNUAL ATTRITION PERCENT Special Education % Mathematics Education % Science Education % English % Elementary Education % All Public Education % [Aggregated data from the 91-92, 94-95, & TFSs] 34

35 NONETHELESS, THERE IS PARTICULAR CONCERN IN THE FIELD ABOUT THE ATTRITION OF BEGINNING TEACHERS IN SPECIAL EDUCATION. CEC s Bright Futures..., (2000). Four out of every ten special educators entering special education have left [the profession] before their fifth year (p. 7). WHAT DOES RECENT EVIDENCE SHOW ABOUT THE ATTRITION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS BEFORE THEIR FIFTH YEAR? 35

36 EXIT ATTRITION During First 4 Years by Field Special Ed Full-Time 24% Part-Time 49% Total 27% General Ed Full-Time 31% Part-Time 48% Total 33% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% Four -Year Attrition Percent Figure 11. Sum of the annual percentages of special and general education teachers who leave teaching employment in public schools after one though four years of teaching experience, by employment status. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow- Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 36

37 To what extent is the attrition of special education teachers due to reasons directly amenable to intervention by improved policy and practice intended to improve retention, as distinguished from personal and other reasons having little to do with working conditions and satisfaction with the teaching profession? 37

38 Table 4. Main Reasons for Exit Attrition: National Estimates of Public School Leavers for Three School Years Combined ( , , and ) Nationally Estimated Leavers Per Year Special Ed. General Ed. Main Reason for Leaving Number Col % Number Col % I. Escape Teaching A. Other Career 2, % 14, % B. Better Salary 1, % 10, % C. Take Courses for Other Career % 1, % D. Dissatisfaction with Teaching 2, % 9, % Subtotal a 6, % 36, % II. Professional Development A. Take Courses for Education Career 1, % 8, % B. Sabbatical % 4, % Subtotal 1, % 13, % III. Personal A. Family or Personal 2, % 25, % B. Pregnancy/Child Bearing 3, % 18, % Subtotal 5, % 44, % IV. Involuntary A. Health % 7, % B. Staffing Action 1, % 6, % Subtotal 1, % 14, % V. Retirement a 3, % 43, % Total Leavers: Number and % of Leavers 18, % 151, % As % of Total Teachers 6.3 % 6.4 % Note. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. a Statistically significant difference between special and general education subtotals (p<.001). Source: E. E. Boe, et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 38

39 EXIT ATTRITION Reason by Teaching Field Escape Teaching * Special Ed 36.7% General Ed 23.8% Prof Development Special Ed General Ed 7.7% 8.9% Personal Special Ed General Ed 29.1% 31.8% Job Action Special Ed General Ed 7.3% 9.5% Retirement * Special Ed 16.5% General Ed 28.8% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% Percentage of Total Leavers Figure 12. Percentages of public school teachers who leave teaching employment as a function of five main reasons for leaving. For special and general education teachers separately, percentages sum to 100%. *For escape teaching and retirement, the differences between special and general education are statistically significant (p<.001). Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 39

40 CONCLUSIONS: Analyses of Main Reasons for Teacher Attrition in Special Education 1. OF THE ESTIMATED 18,500 SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS WHO LEAVE TEACHING ANNUALLY, ONLY 6,800 SEEK TO ESCAPE. MOST LIKELY, MANY OF THESE SHOULD LEAVE BECAUSE THEY ARE UNQUALIFIED OR NOT WELL SUITED TO THE TEACHING PROFESSION. 2. THERE IS ONLY MODEST POTENTIAL TO REDUCE THE ATTRITION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS JUST THROUGH IMPROVED RETENTION OF THOSE WHO SEEK TO ESCAPE FROM TEACHING. E.G., ONE-THIRD IMPROVEMENT IN RETENTION WOULD REDUCE ATTRITION BY ONLY 2,300 OF THE ANNUAL TOTAL OF 18,500 LEAVERS. 3. THE HIGHER PERCENTAGE OF TEACHERS SEEKING TO ESCAPE FROM SPECIAL EDUCATION THAN FROM GENERAL EDUCATION MAY WELL BE THE MOST IMPORTANT DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SPECIAL AND GENERAL EDUCATION IN TURNOVER PHENOMENA. IT MERITS THE INTERVENTION OF POLICY MAKERS AND MORE INTENSIVE INVESTIGATION BY RESEARCHERS. 40

41 IN ADDITION TO THE LOSS OF TEACHERS THROUGH ATTRITION, THERE IS GREAT CONCERN IN THE FIELD OF SPECIAL EDUCATION ABOUT THE LOSS OF TEACHERS THROUGH THEIR SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION. James McLeskey s Forward in Billingsley (2005): Perhaps the most alarming statistic regarding special education teacher attrition is the transfer rate to general education. Special educators are ten times more likely to transfer to general education as general educators are to transfer to special education (p. xvii). OUR RECENT DATA PROVIDE BETTER ESTIMATES OF SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION, AND SHOW SOME FAVORABLE TRADE-OFFS FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION. 41

42 TEACHING FIELD TRANSFER Out-Switching from Special and General Education 1991 Out-Switching General to Special Ed 0.5% Special to General Ed 5.5% 1994 Out-Switching General to Special Ed 1.0% Special to General Ed 8.8% 2000 Out-Switching General to Special Ed 1.5% Special to General Ed 10.2% 0% 2% 4% 6% 8% 10% 12% Percentage of Out-Switchers Figure 13. Percentages of general education teachers in public schools who transfer to special education (i.e., out-switching), and special education teachers who transfer to general education, by school year. Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 42

43 TEACHING FIELD TRANSFER* Special Education Out- and In-Switching 1991 Out-Switch to Gen Ed 16 K In-Switch from Gen Ed 11 K 1994 Out-Switch to Gen Ed In-Switch from Gen Ed 24 K 23 K 2000 Out-Switch to Gen Ed 33 K In-Switch from Gen Ed 40 K K 10 K 20 K 30 K 40 K 50 K Number of Switchers (1000s) Figure 14. Number (1000s) of special education teachers who transfer to general education (outswitching), and number of general education teachers who transfer into special education (inswitching), by school year. *The differences between out-switchers and in-switchers as a function of year are not statistically significant. Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 43

44 Table 5. Cognate Area Transfer and Exit Attrition of Public School Teachers for Eight Cognate Areas: National Estimates of the Number and Percentage of Teachers by Turnover Status Following Three School Years Combined Turnover Status for Three Years Combined ( , , ) Cognate Area a Statistic b Remainers Out-Switchers In-Switchers c Leavers Total d English Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 610, , ,423 47, ,850 Row % 76.5% 17.6% 15.5% 5.9% 100% Mathematics Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 454,338 61,409 71,238 39, ,486 Row % 81.8% 11.1% 12.8% 7.2% 100% Science Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 408,301 51,065 37,042 32, ,103 Row % 83.0% 10.4% 7.5% 6.7% 100% Social Science Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 379,317 45,662 49,629 30, ,543 Row % 83.3% 10.0% 10.9% 6.7% 100% Arts/ Music Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 478,488 27,671 19,548 38, ,049 Row % 87.8% 5.1% 3.6% 7.1% 100% Foreign Language Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 181,707 13,939 11,683 9, ,585 Row % 88.4% 6.8% 5.7% 4.8% 100% Physical/ Health Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 401,707 44,479 28,984 18, ,733 Education Row % 86.4% 9.6% 6.2% 4.0% 100% Bilingual/ ESL Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 71,414 34,824 23,622 6, ,512 Row % 63.5% 31.0% 21.0% 5.6% 100% Vocational/ Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 344,152 31,231 39,394 26, ,379 Business Educ. Row % 85.5% 7.8% 9.8% 6.7% 100% Other General Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 223, , ,863 35, ,731 Education Row % 54.1% 37.2% 24.4% 8.7% 100% Elementary Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 2,388, , , ,073 2,743,336 Education Row % 87.1% 6.7% 10.2% 6.3% 100% Special Education Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 754,144 73,346 74,950 59, ,257 Row % 85.0% 8.3% 8.4% 6.7% 100% Total Teachers Nat l Estimate: 3 Years 6,695, , , ,793 8,075,563 Row % 82.9% 10.7% 10.7% 6.4% 100% Note. Data from the , , and Schools and Staffing Surveys and the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, National Center for Education Statistics, USDE. a Cognate area for the three years combined ( , , and ) prior to turnover. b Nationally weighted estimates (Nat l Estimate) for three years combined: reported as the mean number of teachers of the total full-time and part-time teachers combined at the K-12 levels. Totals may not sum exactly due to rounding. Row % = percentages of nationally estimated teachers of the row total of nationally estimated teachers. c In-switchers to a cognate area during the follow-up year as a percentage of total teachers in a cognate area during the prior year (as is the percentage of out-switchers). Therefore, since the computation of out-switchers and in-switchers is based on the same total number of teachers, differences between the two types of switching are directly comparable. d Total teachers is the sum of the remainers, out-switchers, and leavers for each cognate area. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 44

45 NOT ONLY ARE THE NUMBERS OF TEACHERS WHO SWITCH BETWEEN SPECIAL AND GENERAL EDUCATION COMPARABLE, THE PERCENTAGE OF OUT-SWITCHERS FROM SPECIAL EDUCATION IS ACTUALLY LOWER THAN THE PERCENTAGE OF OUT-SWITCHERS FROM MANY COGNATE AREAS OF GENERAL EDUCATION: ANNUAL SWITCHING PERCENT Special Education % Mathematics Education % Science Education % English % Elementary Education % All Public Education % [Aggregated data from the 91-92, 94-95, & TFSs] 45

46 AS WITH EXIT ATTRITION, THERE IS ALSO CONCERN IN THE FIELD OF SPECIAL EDUCATION ABOUT THE HIGH TURNOVER OF ITS BEGINNING TEACHERS. DIFFERENT ESTIMATES OF THIS TURNOVER HAVE BEEN OFFERED. CEC s Bright Futures..., (2000). Four out of every ten special educators entering the field leave special education before their fifth year of teaching (p. 1). James McLeskey s Forward in Billingsley (2005): Within four years of beginning to teach, over one-half of all special education teachers either leave the profession altogether or transfer to general education. (p. xvii). OUR RECENT FINDINGS SHOW THAT McLESKEY S ESTIMATES ARE CLOSE. 46

47 TURNOVER Full-Time Special Education Teachers During First 4 Years Leaving Teaching 24% Switch to General Ed 31% Leave plus Switch 55% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% Four-Year Turnover Percent Figure 15. Sum of the annual percentages of fulltime special education teachers in public schools who leave teaching employment, and who transfer to general education, after one though four years of teaching experience. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow- Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 47

48 WHAT QUALIFICATION VARIABLES ARE PREDICTIVE OF TEACHERS WHO SWITCH OUT OF, AND SWITCH INTO, SPECIAL EDUCATION? THAT IS, TO WHAT EXTENT DO TEACHERS WITH ESPECIALLY VALUED QUALIFICATION CHARACTERISTICS SUCH AS BEING FULLY- CERTIFIED SWITCH OUT OF, AND INTO, SPECIAL EDUCATION COMPARED WITH THOSE WITH LESS VALUED CHARACTERISTICS? 48

49 Table 6. Teacher Qualification Variables Predictive of Out-Switching from Special Education and In-Switching to Special Education: National Estimates for Public School Teachers for Three School Years Combined ( , , and ) Special Education Teachers Teacher Qualification Switchers/Year a Switchers/Year (%) b Out In Out In Certification Full 22,000 22,000 9% 9% Part (Ref.) 3,000 3,000 10% 11% Assignment In-Field 8,000 8,000 5%*** 6%* Out-of-Field (Ref.) 17,000 17,000 12% 11% Experience (years) Four or More 20,000 21,000 8%* 10% One to Three (Ref.) 5,000 4,000 13% 11% Degree Level Master s or Higher 11,000 c 16,000 c 7% 9% Bachelor s or Lower (Ref.) 13,000 9,000 11% 8% Degree Field Special Education 14,000 15,000 7%*** 7%* General Education (Ref.) 9,000 6,000 18% 14% Note. Data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Number of teachers reported in 1000s. Col. % = percentages of nationally estimated leavers per year. a Rounded to nearest thousand. b The designated percentages of switchers are significantly less than that of the reference level (Ref.) below (*p<.05, **p<.01, ***p<.001). c The number of in-switchers at the master degree (or higher) level from general education to special education was significantly greater than the number of such out-switchers from special to general education (p=.001). Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 49

50 TEACHING FIELD TRANSFER * Special Education Switching by School Transfer SET Out-Switchers Stayed Same School 60 K Moved School, Same LEA 9 K Moved to Different LEA 4 K SET In-Switchers Stayed Same School 55 K Moved School, Same LEA 6 K Moved to Different LEA 13 K K 15 K 30 K 45 K 60 K 75 K Number of Switchers (1000s) Figure 16. Number (1000s) of special education teachers (SET) in public schools who transfer to general education (out-switching), and number of general education teachers who transfer into special education (in-switching), by school transfer status (LEA=local education agency). *The differences between out-switchers and inswitchers in the amounts of school transfer are statistically significant (p<.01). Data from the , , and Teacher Follow- Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 50

51 CONCLUSIONS: ANALYSES OF SWITCHING BETWEEN SPECIAL AND GENERAL EDUCATION [pertaining to public school teachers] 1. THE NUMBER OF TEACHERS SWITCHING OUT OF SPECIAL EDUCATION IS COMPENSATED FOR BY AN EQUIVALENT NUMBER OF TEACHERS SWITCHING IN FROM GENERAL EDUCATION. 2. SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS WHO SWITCH TO GENERAL EDUCATION HOLD LESSER QUALIFICATIONS IN SPECIAL EDUCATION: THOSE TEACHING OUT-OF-THE- FIELD OF THEIR DEGREE MAJOR AND THOSE WHO DO NOT HOLD DEGREES IN AN AREA OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHING. 3. GENERAL EDUCATION TEACHERS WHO SWITCH INTO SPECIAL EDUCATION ALSO HOLD LESSER QUALIFICATIONS IN SPECIAL EDUCATION: THOSE TEACHING OUT-OF-FIELD OF THEIR DEGREE MAJOR AND THOSE WHO DO NOT HOLD DEGREES IN AN AREA OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHING. 4. THE PERCENTAGE OF OUT-SWITCHERS FROM SPECIAL EDUCATION IS NOT GREATER THAN THE PERCENTAGE OF OUT-SWITCHERS FROM COGNATE AREAS OF GENERAL EDUCATION SUCH AS MATHEMATICS EDUCATION AND ENGLISH EDUCATION. 51

52 AS WITH EXIT ATTRITION AND SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION, THERE IS CONCERN IN THE FIELD OF SPECIAL EDUCATION ABOUT THE HIGH PERCENTAGE OF ITS BEGINNING TEACHERS WHO MOVE FROM ONE SCHOOL TO ANOTHER. James McLeskey s Forward in Billingsley (2005): Perhaps as important [as out-switching], during this same four-year period [of beginning to teach], those who remain in special education frequently migrate from one school to another, seeking a more satisfying role and better working conditions (p. xvii). OUR RECENT FINDINGS SHOW THAT McLESKEY S CONCERNS ARE WELL FOUNDED IN THAT SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS TRANSFER TO DIFFERENT SCHOOLS AT A HIGHER PERCENTAGE THAN EITHER EXIT ATTRITION OR SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION. 52

53 Annual School Transfer Percent 14% School Transfer* 12% 10% 10.4% 10.2% Special Education 8% 7.3% 6.8% 7.1% General Education 7.4% 6% 4% 2% 0% School Year Figure 17. Annual percentage of public school teachers in special education and general education who transferred to a different school, by school year. *The difference between special and general education in annual school transfer percent during the school year is statistically significant (p<.05). Data sources: , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 53

54 PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER: THE THREE COMPONENTS OF TURNOVER OF SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS 1. LEAVING TEACHING EMPLOYMENT 2. SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION 3. MOVING TO A DIFFERENT SCHOOL 54

55 100% Leave Teaching: 6.3% Switch to General Education: 8.3% [Same (6.8%) or Different (1.5%) School] 80% Remain as SET, but Move to Different School: 7.9% Percentage of Special Education Teachers 60% 40% Remain as SET and Stay in Same School: 77.5% 20% 0% Figure 18. Components of annual turnover and retention of special education teachers (SET) in public education. Aggregated data from the , , and Teacher Follow-Up Surveys, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 55

56 COMPONENTS OF TEACHER DEMAND AND TEACHER SUPPLY IN SPECIAL EDUCATION 56

57 344K Growth in Positions for 00-01: 7K Vacant in 00-01: 5K Vacant in 99-00: 7K Entering Teacher Hires: 26K Vacant: Left Teaching: 24K 300K Vacant: Switched to General Ed: 33K Switched from General Ed: 40K Number of Special Education Teaching Positions (1000s) 250K 200K 150K 100K Remaining as SETs Next Year: 273K Remaining as SETs from Previous Year: 273K 50K 0 Teacher Demand End of School Year Teacher Supply School Year Figure 19. Components of total demand in public education for special education teachers (SETs) at the end of the school year, and components of sources of supply of SETs for the school year. Sources of data for estimates shown: the Schools and Staffing Survey and the Teacher Follow-Up Survey, NCES, USDE; and the Data Analysis System, Office of Special Education Programs. [Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors 57 Conference, Washington, DC.]

58 IF THE ANNUAL DEMAND FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS IS MAINLY PRODUCED BY LOSSES THROUGH ATTRITION AND SWITCHING TO GENERAL EDUCATION, HOW ADEQUATE IS THE SUPPLY OF ENTERING TEACHERS TO PRODUCE QUALIFIED REPLACEMENTS? The nation actually produces far more new teachers than it needs. Darling-Hammond and Sykes (2003, p. 4) QUESTIONS ABOUT THE PRODUCTION (i.e., SUPPLY) OF NEWLY MINTED TEACHERS BY THE NATION S TRADI- TIONAL TEACHER PREPARATION PROGRAMS: 1. How many degree graduates with teacher preparation are produced each year? 2. How many of these graduates secure employment as teachers? 3. Do graduates who do not secure teaching employment represent Far more teachers than the nation needs (as cited above)? 58

59 Table 7. Annual National Supply of Degree Graduates with Teacher Preparation: Numbers Produced, Hired as Teachers, and Not Hired as Teachers in Public and Private Schools Combined during 1999 Degree Level (1000s) Annual Teacher Supply of Degree Graduates With Teacher Preparation (1999) Bachelor s Master s Total Total Degree Graduates a with Teacher Preparation With education degree major (IPEDS) 104K 58K 162K With other degree major (Estimated) 41K 9K 51K Total Degree Graduates 145K 67K 212K Degree Graduates Employed as Teachers Employed as Teachers Before Graduation (SASS) 3K 43K 46K Enter Teaching After Graduation (SASS) 108K 22K 130K Total Employed Graduates 111K 65K 176K Percent Employed Graduates 77% 97% 83% Degree Graduates Not Employed as Teachers Total Not Employed 34K 2K 36K Percent Not Employed 23% 3% 17% Note: Data from the 1999 Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and the Schools and Staffing Survey, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 59

60 35 30 SPECIAL EDUCATION Bachelors Masters Total Graduates (x1000) GENERAL EDUCATION 160 Bachelors Masters Total Graduates (x1000) Year Figure 20. Number of degree graduates (thousands) with majors in teacher preparation programs as a function of year and degree level. Data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) of the National Center for Educational Statistics, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 60

61 Table 8. First-Time Special and General Education Teachers in Public Schools: National Estimates of the Percentage of Teachers by Teacher Preparation and Degree Major for the School Year Teaching Field b Supply Source: First-Time Teachers Statistic a Special Education General Education I. With Extensive Teacher Preparation A. Special Education Teacher Column % 34.8% 0.5% c Preparation Major Standard Error % 5.7% 0.2% B. Both Special and General Education Column % 11.6% 1.2% c Teacher Preparation Major Standard Error % 3.2% 0.5% C. General Education Teacher Column % 17.6% 53.5% Preparation Major Standard Error % 3.8% 2.0% D. Other Major Column % 9.9% c 27.2% Standard Error % 3.3% 1.7% Subtotal: With Extensive Teacher Column % 74.0% 82.4% Preparation Standard Error % 5.9% 1.4% II. With Some Teacher Preparation Column % 16.1% c 8.6% Standard Error % 5.6% 1.0% III. Without Teacher Preparation Column % 10.0% c 9.0% Standard Error % 2.9% 0.9% Total First-Time Teachers Column % 100% 100% National Estimate 13, ,907 Std Error Natl Est 1,412 4,258 Sample (n) 209 1,950 Note. Data from the Schools and Staffing Surveys, National Center for Education Statistics, USDE. a Nationally weighted column percentages of the total number of first-time special and general education teachers. Standard Error % is the standard error of the column percentages. National Estimate is the nationally weighted estimates of the total number of first-time teachers. Std Error Natl Est is the standard error of the national estimates. b The supply source by teaching field (6 x 2) χ 2 was (p <.001). c Sample size (n) is less than 30. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 61

62 DO ENTERING TEACHERS HIRED FROM VARIOUS SOURCES OF SUPPLY REDUCE OR EXACERBATE THE SHORTAGE OF QUALIFIED TEACHERS? THE SOURCES OF ENTERING TEACHER SUPPLY FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS TO BE ANALYZED ARE: 1. First-time teachers with teacher preparation: a. With extensive teacher preparation (traditional and alternative routes) b. With some teacher preparation 2. First-time teachers without teacher preparation 3. Experienced teachers: a. Reentering experienced teachers b. Migrants from private to public schools 62

63 Teaching Field Special Education All Teachers First-Time Teachers: Prepared Entering Teachers: Public Schools 32% 54% Not Prepared 100% 93% Experienced 23% 28% Total Entering 44% 32% Total Teachers 12.6% 10.5% 0% 20% 40% 60% 90% 100% Partly Certified Percentage Figure 21. Partly Certified Teachers: Percentage of entering teachers in public schools who were only partly certified in their main teaching assignment as a function of source of teacher supply. Data from the Schools and Staffing Survey, NCES, USDE. Source: E. E. Boe et al., July 27, 2005, OSEP Project Directors Conference, Washington, DC. 63

64 CONCLUSIONS ABOUT THE ADEQUACY OF THE SUPPLY OF ENTERING TEACHERS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS 1. Traditional and non-traditional teacher preparation programs are not producing sufficient numbers of new teachers to meet the quantity demand for entering teachers in the schools where such demand exists. Relevant considerations are: a. The gross supply estimates of new graduates (212K) may be too high. The AACTE/NCATE database suggests half as much. b. Shortage of sufficient numbers of prepared new teachers requires public schools to hire 7% of entering teachers without preparation. c. Some prepared graduates elect to commence postgraduate studies. d. Some prepared graduates complete teacher preparation as a backup option for possible future use. 2. None of the sources of entering teacher supply yield sufficient numbers of qualified teachers to meet the quality demand for entering teachers in the schools where such demand exists. 3. Entering teachers from all sources are less qualified than continuing teachers. Therefore, entering teachers exacerbate the shortage of qualified teachers instead of reducing it. 64

65 REFERENCES Billingsley, B. S. (2004). Special education teacher retention and attrition: A critical analysis of the research literature. Journal of Special Education, 33(1), Billingsley, B. S. (2005). Cultivating and keeping committed special education teachers: What principals and district leaders can do. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. Council for Exceptional Children (2000). Bright futures for exceptional learners. Reston, VA: Author. Darling-Hammond, L., & Sykes, G. (2003). Wanted: A national teacher supply policy for education: The right way to meet the Highly Qualified Teacher challenge. Educational Policy Analysis Archives, 11 (33). Johnson, S, M., Berg, J. H., & Donaldson, M. L. (2005). Who stays in teaching and why: A review of the literature on teacher retention. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University, Harvard Graduate School of Education, The Project on the Next Generation of Teachers. McLeskey, J. (2005) Forward. In B. S. Billingsley, Cultivating and keeping committed special education teachers: What principals and district leaders can do (pp. xvi-xix). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. National Commission on Teaching and America's Future (2003). No dream denied: A Pledge to America s children. New York: Author. USDE. (2002). Meeting the Highly Qualified Teachers Challenge: The Secretary s Annual Report on Teacher Quality. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. USDE. (2003). Meeting the Highly Qualified Teachers Challenge: The Secretary s Second Annual Report on Teacher Quality. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. 65

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