Date of Award:

2002

Document Type:

Dissertation

Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department:

School of Teacher Education and Leadership

Advisor/Chair:

Ron Thorkildsen

Abstract

This monograph reports the results of a comprehensive study of teacher supply and demand conditions in Utah. This research was conducted under contract with the Utah State Office of Education. The objectives of this research were as follows: (a) analyze year 2000 staffing patterns of Utah schools and estimate the potential effects of future retirement on current teacher pools; (b) use enrollment projections and base-year pupil-teacher ratios to predict teacher need for each geographic area and content area; (c) assess the supply of educators from Utah colleges of education and identify reasons why newly prepared teachers do not teach in Utah; (d) assess rates of early attrition among new teachers and identify reasons why new teachers leave; (e) assess the extent of unqualified teaching in Utah schools; (f) compare results from this study with results of nationally representative research; (g) make recommendations for future data collection. Information for this study was obtained from the deans of Utah's colleges of education, the Utah State Office of Education teacher licensure database (CACTUS), Utah State Office of Education enrollment projections, Utah Governor's Office of Planning and Budget demographic projections, and two opinion surveys.

Results indicate that between 2001 and 2005 teacher need from enrollment growth will be greatest in elementary teaching and special education assignments; that approximately 50% of new teachers educated in Utah between 1995 and 1998 did not teach in Utah within 3 years, and that most of these graduates either did not seek a teaching position or sought but did not obtain a teaching position in Utah; that 40% of new Utah teachers leave their positions during the first five years of employment, but that few leave because of dissatisfaction with teaching; that most former teachers and nonteaching graduate s would consider teaching in Utah in the future; and that nearly 5% of teachers statewide have not been formally qualified for their assignments. Comparisons with findings from nationally representative studies reveal that the reasons for attrition among Utah educators are very similar to those of educators in other parts of the nation. This report concludes with a set of recommendations for making ongoing assessments of Utah teacher supply and demand conditions.

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