Study: Teacher vacancies up in South Carolina amid pandemic

Education

Principal Susan Stevens talks to the media during a demonstration of a socially-distanced classroom at A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School of Engineering Monday, July 20, 2020, in Greenville, S.C. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A new study finds teacher vacancies in South Carolina are up 26% compared to last year.

The findings lead teacher advocates and public education officials to say the coronavirus pandemic is worsening the state’s teacher shortage.

Education officials say the vacancies can lead to larger class sizes, more classes taught by long-term substitutes, and some specialized classes not being offered.

Advocates also say the teacher exodus could mean problems long-term for how schools will hire and keep teachers.

State superintendent of education Molly Spearman cited the report to call on state leaders to support and fund teacher recruitment and retention programs.

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