Pandemic’s Impact on State’s Teacher Workforce – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

There is a hearing scheduled at the Texas State Capitol in Austin on Tuesday to “evaluate the impact of the pandemic on the state’s teacher workforce.”

Nearly 43,000 Texas teachers have left the profession within the last year, according to the Texas-American Federation of Teachers (Texas-AFT). That amounts to approximately 13% of the 320,000 teachers that Texas public schools employ, according to figures provided by the Texas Education Agency.

An even larger figure – 66% – has at least considered leaving the teaching profession within the last year, according to a Texas-AFT survey of its membership.

The hearing on Tuesday is being put on by the Education Committee of the Texas House of Representatives.

A big part of the reason why so many teachers have either considered leaving the classroom or have made the move to do so is that they do not feel adequately compensated for the ever-increasing list of responsibilities they are asked to take on, according to a Texas AFT representative.

“Teachers love what they do. We just need to give them the resources to do it and do it well,” said Patti Quinzi, Director of Public Affairs & Legislative Counsel for Texas-AFT. “It’s not a shame. It is worse than that. It is a disservice to our field when our children don’t have those people who are going, ‘I would love to teach, but I just can’t afford to pay the mortgage.’”

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