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KY Education Commissioner: 72% of state teachers at risk of leaving

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Posted at 6:16 PM, Jun 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-07 18:16:13-04

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — About 72% of Kentucky's teachers are considered at risk of leaving the profession, according to Kentucky Education Commissioner Dr. Jason Glass.

On Tuesday, the commissioner told lawmakers on the Interim Education Committee about Kentucky's teacher shortage. He explained that out of Kentucky's 42,525 full-time equivalent teachers, 30,801 are considered at risk of leaving the profession. And 21,448 of them have been teaching for less than five years.

“We have a large number of individuals who really are at risk of leaving," said Glass. "So, all the signs are there and that’s of concern.”

Glass also explained that Kentucky on average fills 83.5% of posted teaching jobs. That means nearly one in every five teaching jobs in Kentucky are not filled.

So, Glass told lawmakers Kentucky needs to make changes to better recruit and retain teachers.

He suggested:

  • Investing significant resources in GoTeachKY
  • Addressing the compensation crisis
  • Raising the desirability of teaching

However, the commissioner said he is open to ideas lawmakers have as well. He's hopeful the legislature will do something to combat the teacher shortage because it's an issue that affects every community.

"Everybody wants great teachers in their community. Everybody does," said Glass. "So, doesn’t matter what your political stripes are. That’s something that we can all share.”