ERIC Number: ED415228
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994
Teacher Shortages and Teacher Quality.
Ingersoll, Richard M.
This study investigates shortages of qualified U.S. secondary teachers using data from the 1991 Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), a nationally representative study conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics. The SASS includes four sets of integrated questionnaires: a school survey, central district survey, principal survey, and teacher survey. This study involved data from 25,079 secondary teachers from 3,724 public and 465 private schools, examining levels and variations in out-of-field teaching. Preliminary results suggest that demand for teachers is on the rise. Reserve pools of teachers are large, but schools have been able to fill available teaching positions at the expense of minimal teacher qualifications. About half of the principals report difficulties filling vacancies. Typical coping strategies include eliminating positions, increasing supplies of certain types of teachers, filling positions with underqualified candidates, assigning other teachers, and using substitutes. While most secondary teachers have substantial training in the main field in which they teach, large numbers teach additional courses in fields for which they do not have at least a college minor. Levels of out-of-field teaching vary substantially by field, with the highest proportion in mathematics (30 percent). There are distinct differences among schools. Small schools, private schools, and schools with high proportions of poor students have higher levels of out-of-field teaching. (Contains 4 tables and 25 references.) (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Schools and Staffing Survey (NCES)