by Dr. Terry Stoops
Director of the Center for Effective Education, John Locke Foundation
On Sunday, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Association of Educators (CMAE) held a press conference to urge lawmakers to address the teacher shortage by raising salaries. The problem is that there is no evidence of a teacher shortage.
Vacancy rates are usually published in the State of the Teaching Profession report in February or March annually. In the photo below, you’ll notice that the CMAE uses data from the 2019-20 report:
Data from the 2019-20 State of the Teaching Profession report tells us nothing – absolutely nothing – about vacancies for the current school year. Those figures represent teacher vacancies on the first and 40th instructional days of the 2019-2020 school year. Amusingly, the vacancy rate for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools that year was 0.2% that year.
According to the TeachNC job board, there are around 4,300 teaching positions open at this time. This represents a fraction of the over 100,000 teachers employed by charter and district schools each year.
But it is not known how many of the TeachNC vacancies have been filled in the days leading up to the start of the new school year. Moreover, some of the vacant instructional positions listed are substitute, part-time, and ancillary/support positions and not permanent classroom teachers.