300,000 open positions in schools nationwide; Minnesota teachers union shares pandemic-related issues

Teacher shortage
Teacher shortage(KTTC)
Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 5:21 PM CDT
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – The start of the school year for Rochester Public Schools (RPS) is two weeks away, but there are still nearly 300 positions waiting to be filled.

It’s an issue happening in Rochester and all over the country with around 300,000 openings for teachers and support staff nationwide.

Like many other industries, the pandemic severely disrupted public schools in Minnesota.

According to a recent study, forty percent of U.S. educators reported they were very likely or fairly likely to leave the profession in the next two years.

Tuesday, Education Minnesota released a paper called “Minnesota schools at a breaking point: Pandemic stories from educators across the state.” Researchers found that since the pandemic, teachers have felt the education system has been ignored and under-funded.

One school is Osseo Minnesota. It had to transition to distanced-learning for two weeks during the pandemic, because there weren’t enough teachers to staff the classrooms.

“We cared for the children of our frontline workers. We hopped on buses to deliver school supplies and meal for families in need. We all dropped into these roles without any knowledge on how this virus was spread,” Osseo educational support professional Jeanne Fox said.

Wednesday, RPS is hosting a walk-in job fair from 12:30 to 4:30 at the Edison Building.