WEA Stepping Up to Address Mounting Teacher Shortage

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The pandemic has heightened concern at all levels of our education system about the mounting teacher shortage. The pipeline of educators seeking and achieving certification has been declining for over a decade and has worsened during the pandemic. In a 2022 poll a third of WEA members, disproportionately people who are Black, Brown or Indigenous, said they're considering leaving the profession. Acute teacher shortages are our expected reality for the next 5-10 years.

To change this trajectory, WEA is stepping forward to help find solutions to ensure every Washington student has access to well-prepared, supported and certificated teachers. In March 2022 the WEA Board of Directors approved a motion guiding WEA to begin the process of developing its own teacher residency preparation program.

This prospective program is pending approval by the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB). Concurrent with its program approval steps with PESB, WEA will offer professional development to the over 13,000 Emergency Substitutes working in Washington’s public schools. This will provide them much needed support to be effective in their daily work with students.

WEA is proud do its part to address the growing teaching shortage. Details on this prospective program are forthcoming. Please check back here for updates.

To receive future updates about WEA’s professional development for emergency substitutes and the prospective teacher residency program, please fill out this interest form.