Demand for Teachers Outpacing Supply

Demand for Teachers Outpacing Supply

Article courtesy of USC Rossier School of Education

Top research institutions are committed to preparing America's next great generation of educators.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, America currently has about 3.2 million teachers who work in some 95,000 schools. But more than half of those teachers and principals are Baby Boomers, and during the next four years, we could lose a third of our veteran teachers and school leaders to retirement and attrition.

These major demographic shifts mean that teaching is going to be a booming profession in the years ahead -- with school districts nationwide making up to 200,000 new, first-time hires annually.1

Innovative Teaching Programs

To help meet the growing demand for a new generation of well-prepared teachers who have acquired the education and training to significantly boost student learning, leading colleges of education across the U.S. are turning to innovative programs, emerging technologies and the power of the Internet to attract and prepare America's next great generation of teachers.

For example, the prestigious Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California, which has graduated top teaching talent for more than 100 years, has reached beyond the physical boundaries of its campus to offer and deliver its highly regarded Master of Arts in Teaching program online (MAT@USC).

The MAT@USC combines interactive online learning with carefully selected field-based experiences in the area where students live, enabling them to earn a renowned master's degree from anywhere in the country. The program offers a course of study for aspiring teachers -- including the opportunity to earn a state teaching credential in their home state, and one for current educators who wish to take their careers to the next level.

To ensure that the integrity of the school's academic standards is maintained, and that students stay connected to their studies, the MAT@USC relies heavily on state-of-the-art web technologies to foster one-on-one interaction between students and faculty. The program's learning platform was designed with a nod towards the familiar user-interfaces on many of today's most popular social networking sites.

Grants to teach

Many leading research institutions have begun offering forward-thinking grants and incentives to future educators who make a commitment to teach where they are needed most. Rossier's MAT@USC, for example, offers the $5,000 Roy Romer Teaching Fellowship to graduates who teach full-time for at least five consecutive years in certain elementary and secondary schools that serve high-need areas.

No teacher left behind

Programs such as the MAT@USC are not only designed to instill knowledge, confidence and skill in teachers who can help change the future of American education; they are also accessible to all -- regardless of location.

Now, people possessing the innate talent and desire to become great teachers can leverage the power of modern technology and the curricula of prestigious universities to help them achieve their dreams and goals. And that bodes well for future generations of American schoolchildren.

Sources
1 http://www.ed.gov/news/speeches/2009/10/10222009.html

Learn more about the USC Rossier School of Education.

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