The declining rate of qualified new public school teachers in urban American school districts has reached problematic proportions in the last few years. As a result, schools all over the country are experiencing a sharp decline in funding and performance as well as an increase in the dropout rate. According to Jason Amos (Alliance for Excellent Education), this phenomenon costs the United States approximately $260,000 in worker productivity as well as unrealized wages and taxes (http://teachereducation.steinhardt.nyu.edu/new-teachers-urban-schools-dropouts/).
The number of undergraduate students enrolled in education-focused programs dropped by almost one-third between 2010 and 2014. Instead, undergrads are focusing on more lucrative careers such as those found in the technology or financial sector. The consequence of this sharp reduction in new teachers is that many job positions go unfilled, especially in urban areas. This especially holds true for teachers who specialize in special needs learning, English-language learning, and all of the subjects that encompass the sciences.
To attract more college students into education-focused programs, schools will have to repackage the career of teaching as something to be desired. Currently, programs have been established that that have a focus on solving regional and local issues through teaching. Students who are community minded might reconsider a career in teaching if they feel like their efforts will make a difference in the current and future lives of community members.
Another solution to the problem of the insufficient number of new teachers will be an increase in school funding and an expansion of school curriculum. Offering competitive salaries and curriculum will attract new teachers that may have an interest in teaching but feel that the pay-scale is too low to sustain an acceptable standard of living.