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DPI State Superintendent: Act 10 played a factor in teacher shortages

MADISON (WKOW) — Salaries, school environments and long hours are all factors Wisconsin’s State Superintendent of Schools says are causing a teacher shortage.

Over the last decade, State Superintendent Caroline Stanford-Taylor says a majority of school districts have struggled to fill positions and believes the decline began after Act 10. That occurred in 2011 when then-Governor Scott Walker eliminated union rights of most public employees.

Stanford-Taylor said a collaborative effort is underway to attract more educators.

She referenced the Rural Teacher Talent Program, offered through the Department of Public Instruction, which attempts to increase exposure to new teachers and student teachers to work in rural schools.

She also said the department is working on creative ways to find those who are seeking a new profession to apply for a teaching position.

“We’ve created other pathways for people who might have a degree in something else and are looking at a second career to shifting and maybe they always thought about becoming an educator, and now sees this as their opportunity,” said Standford-Taylor.

The department is also advocating to get people into the profession without having a lot of student loan debt.

Emilee Fannon

Capital Bureau Chief

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