Davis, Scott, 10 Committee Members Introduce Bill to Strengthen Teacher Recruitment and Retention
WASHINGTON – Last week, Rep. Susan Davis (CA-53) introduced H.R. 6236, the Innovations to Recruit and Retain Excellent Teachers Act, legislation that will empower school districts to develop targeted recruitment and retention strategies ensuring that all students, regardless of their socioeconomic status, are taught by an excellent, well-supported, and diverse teacher workforce. The bill is co-sponsored by Ranking Member Bobby Scott (VA-03) and 10 other members of the Committee on Education and the Workforce.
“Excellent teachers are at the core of a high-quality school, and this legislation provides teachers with various tools and opportunities to equip them to lead their schools and their classrooms,” said Representative Davis. “Our high teacher turnover rates, especially in low-income schools, are driven by teachers’ unaddressed calls for targeted support and more autonomy. This legislation is a direct response to that call by encouraging comprehensive mentoring and induction programs, teacher leadership pathways, and higher compensation.”
“Elevating the teaching profession to the status it deserves, by providing teachers with a rewarding, sustainable, and successful experience in the classroom, will help ensure that more high-quality teachers remain in the classroom and all students are well-educated,” said Ranking Member Scott. “This legislation is an important step in fulfilling the promise of the Every Student Succeeds Act to provide all students, including low-income students, with a high-quality education supported by an excellent and diverse teacher workforce.”
A 2016 Learning Policy Institute report estimates that America’s schools will face an annual shortage of 100,000 teachers by 2025. Compounding this problem is the systemic under-recruitment and retention of teacher candidates from diverse backgrounds, resulting in a current teacher workforce that does not mirror the diversity of the nation’s students. A 2016 Brookings Institution report found that 50 percent of K-12 students are from minority groups, as compared to only 18 percent of classroom teachers.
The Innovations to Recruit and Retain Excellent Teachers Act will empower school districts to recruit, retain, and develop the excellent and diverse teacher workforce our nation’s students deserve by encouraging strategies such as:
- Partnering with teacher preparation programs to recruit diverse candidates to address teacher shortages in certain subjects;
- Creating high-quality comprehensive induction programs for novice teachers that include individualized coaching, reduced course load, or co-teaching along master teachers;
- Improving compensation structures to better reflect teachers’ roles and responsibilities; and
- Encouraging teacher autonomy and collaboration through teacher-led initiatives such as communities of practice, leadership pathways, and personalized professional growth opportunities.
Arika Trim (Scott), 202-226-0853
Aaron Hunter (Davis), 202-225-2040
Next Article Previous Article