Can a data collection model predict the future of teacher shortages and specific needs of districts and schools? The educator shortage predictor model may do just that and more across the state of Missouri. The Central Comprehensive Center (C3) at the University of Oklahoma is supporting the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Office of Educator Quality in developing a model to measure and track educator staffing trends more accurately that would potentially allow for projections about the K-12 educator workforce in Missouri.
C3 also engaged the resources and expertise of the Regional Educational Laboratory (REL) Central and the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders (GTL Center) in a collaborative effort to support DESE. A Theory of Action has been developed with short- and long-term plans for development of an annual shortage report. The educator shortage predictor model is expected to forecast educator shortages by organizing data for more accurate reporting, performing data analysis, communicating shortage areas, and building a statewide plan for recruiting and retaining effective educators. Other variables that DESE believes may have an impact include retirements, certified but not practicing educators, pay rates, and other incentives.
The expected long-term outcome of this model is to improve effectiveness of instruction statewide by employing specific data to guide policy decisions concerning educator preparation, teacher placement, recruitment, and retention. This model will improve and enhance DESE’s structural capacity by using a statewide data collection model that will provide important decision-making data for DESE and key educator stakeholders across Missouri, including the Missouri Department of Labor and institutes of higher education. This model will be used to provide more accurate reports on educator shortages by subject area, grade level, and geographic region. This will assist DESE in working with educator preparation programs and stakeholders to develop and implement specific strategies designed to address the identified shortages. The goal is to ensure educators are well prepared to address statewide educational needs effectively, particularly in hard to staff subject areas and regions of the state.
For more information and resources, visit the Central Comprehensive Center website at www.c3ta.org.