OAS makes recommendations to help address teacher shortage
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Schools across the country are facing teacher shortages, and Ohio is no different. A recent study by the Ohio Education Association suggests that low salaries are one of the main reasons teachers leave the field.
What do you want to know
- In an effort to address the teacher shortage, the Ohio Education Association has created a set of recommendations
- Ohio’s minimum wage for teachers is $25,950.
- OEA hopes to increase that number to $40,000-$50,000
OAS President Scott DiMauro is a social studies teacher in the Worthington City School District. For the past 30 years, he has dedicated his career to helping students learn the skills they need to succeed.
“I got into education because I really wanted to make a difference in my students’ lives, to help them develop the critical thinking and problem-solving skills to be good citizens,” DiMauro said.
Many other educators share this desire, but various obstacles have prevented them.
“We hear reports everywhere about the state of critical shortages of substitute teachers and bus drivers, but also of classroom teaching positions that are becoming increasingly difficult to fill,” he said.
DiMauro said there are nearly 17,000 fewer people working in public education in Ohio now than before the pandemic. Low wages, working conditions and other economic factors are some of the factors contributing to the shortage, DiMauro said.
“In order to solve this problem, we know we need to look at both how to get more people to choose education as a career and get good, committed, qualified people into every classroom in Ohio,” he said. declared.
“The first step is that we need to increase that minimum from $25,000 at least to $40,000 and we think $50,000 is really going to be a lot more appropriate to close that educator pay gap,” DiMauro said.
Some other recommendations include extending civil service loan forgiveness deadlines, improving working conditions and removing financial barriers to meeting pre-licensing requirements.
“There are other states that are successfully experimenting with paying student teachers, waiving testing fees,” he said. “Things like this ensure that we attract a wide range of people into the profession, that family income is not a barrier.”
The OAS reached out to the General Assembly and the Ohio Department of Education share their recommendations. He is also working on pilot mentoring programs to help train future teachers.
“It’s going to take a holistic approach and we’re ready to partner with anyone who shares our concern about the need to have a caring, skilled and engaged educator in every classroom,” DiMauro said.