January 5, 2022
State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Launches Workgroup to Address School Staff Shortages
SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent Tony Thurmond announced today the formation of a working group to address staff shortages being experienced in California schools. Schools across the country are seeing workforce shortages as is the case in every sector in the country due to the pandemic. California schools are struggling to find teachers, substitute teachers, bus drivers, and other staff during this period.
The workgroup will bring together school district leaders and representatives of associations that represent schools and staff including certificated staff, classified staff and administrators. Representatives from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) will also work with the group. The goal of the group will be to brainstorm strategies that can help schools increase staff size. Workgroup members may focus on several topics including, but not limited to, the following:
- Establishment of workforce pipeline programs
- Educator housing programs
- Best practices to support recruitment
Even before the pandemic, schools experienced workforce shortages which led Superintendent Thurmond to introduce measures in past years to support educator workforce recruitment. This includes a proposal that was funded in the 2019 budget to use tax credit financing to build educator housing in recognition that some recruitment challenges stem from the fact that many staff in California cannot afford to live where they work.
The State Superintendent has recently announced plans to focus on workforce strategies that will help to recruit 10,000 mental health clinicians in schools and to retain 15,000 teachers who are currently working in classrooms but need assistance in completing induction requirements so they can remain working as teachers. Thurmond and the California Department of Education plan to continue working with the CCTC and other state leaders on efforts to use scholarships and residency programs to attract new staff to California schools.Superintendent Thurmond also plans to convene a meeting of representatives in the next few weeks to develop strategies to attract new staff to California schools. Anyone with ideas or experience in recruiting school staff who wish to participate in workgroup meetings to support staff recruitment should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Tony Thurmond —
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100