Too many teachers leave the field early in their career.

On average, educators spend tens of thousands of dollars and years of their live preparing for this career. Unfortunately, for many, once they start teaching, they find themselves feeling like they are not making a difference and do not feel successful. Those feelings are a huge part of why they leave.

It is reported that almost 20% of teachers leave education within the first three years and 50% are reported to leave the field within 5 years of teaching.

The effects of the loss of teachers are seen in poor student success and negative school climate.

The Cost of this Challenge

Teacher turnover rates have a lasting effect on schools. The cost of turnover estimates range from $5,000 per teacher exiting in a small rural district to almost $18,000 in an urban district. The total cost of turnover in Chicago Public Schools is estimated to be over $86 million per year.2

Each year in the United States, there are approximately 325,000 new teachers in public and private education3. Schools desperately need to keep these teachers supported for so much more than financial reasons. The loss of these new educators effects all students.

1http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2015/03/30/395322012/the-hidden-costs-of-teacher-turnover
2http://www.nea.org/tools/17054.htm
3https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d15/tables/dt15_208.20.asp?current=yes

What Teachers are Concerned About

The everyday experience

We heard that over time, the everyday experience of teaching is how many educators began to feel successful. Unfortunately, we need new teachers to feel some success from day one so they stick around long enough to gain that experience. For many, it just takes too long.

Network

When looking for support, most educators rely on their teacher friends and general internet searches to enhance their development. While these resources have good intentions, they often rely on the "It worked for me, it should work for you" theory. Unfortunately, more often than not, this isn't true.

Communication

Educators want more development in the areas of communication with parents, peers and administration. There is a lot to navigate as a teacher and there few opportunities to try out communication techniques like writing email and supporting even the most challenging student and family.

"Just remember, you are not teaching math, you are teaching kids. Keep the kids first, support them and let them know that you care about them as a person and you will be amazed at what they are willing to do for you."

Heidi, High School Teacher from New Jersey

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