If you follow the news, you know teacher shortages are a hot topic all over the country. At the time that this blog was written, 193 news articles were posted in the last month about this issue. City and state newspapers report the plight of countless schools that started up this fall without teachers for many classes. In Florida alone, 3,578 teaching positions were unfilled by the first day of school. (1) A school district in Nevada struggles to operate while dealing with a deficit of more than 400 teachers. (2)Districts are forced to utilize poorly qualified substitutes and even administrative staff to manage the gap.
It is concerning, but is it a fleeting problem? According to the Economic Policy Institute, it is not. Teacher shortages tripled between 2012 and 2016, and the pool of applicants continues to sharply decline. (3) College and university records show that enrollment for an education degree has dropped 35% in just five years, so help is not on the way. (4)
Not only are fewer college graduates entering into the teaching profession, but more early-career teachers are defecting to other jobs. While there are a few reasons for this mass exodus, experts claim that providing early-career support can decrease turnover. (5)
With our background in education and publishing, we saw this troubling trend and resolved to be part of the solution. Analytic Orange was conceived to meet the needs of educators today, supporting both teachers and administrators with tools paired with a robust curriculum. The student-friendly, Social Studies Interactive Workbook provides everything K-6 students need to learn and understand history from multiple perspectives, but teachers do not have to run and make copies or learn some difficult program. Most publishers expect a teacher to slog through hundreds of pages in a Teacher Supplement to prepare each lesson. Analytic Orange has put each lesson into a slide presentation. Even a novice substitute can run the presentation, read the slide notes to the class and teach a perfect lesson, just moments after walking into the classroom.
Social Studies, the study of human society, is needed now more than ever because our communities are in chaos. Unless students have a thorough understanding of society, we cannot expect them to become effective citizens and leaders because a civic mindset requires a solid foundational understanding of Social Studies. While we can’t solve the teaching crisis, we have come up with a solution that can help your students become civically competent, so check out AO’s Social Studies Interactive Workbook today!