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Creating Coherence in the Teacher Shortage Debate: What Policymakers Should Know and Do

Abstract

"Despite a saturation of research about why teachers leave the profession and the policy interventions that might convince them to stay, remarkably little research details the nature of teacher shortages--that is, how teacher shortages have been measured and framed over time, and how policy leaders have addressed them and to what effect. What we do know is that teacher shortages have been of great policy concern for decades, perhaps centuries, but clear-cut data depicting the problem have been hard to come by. Increasingly, states are stepping up their efforts to gather teacher supply-and-demand data to assess the severity of teacher shortages in their districts. But past efforts to report these data have too often painted a muddled picture of little use in policy dialogues and targeted policy development."

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