Facts behind recent CA shortage headlines?

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by MacGuffin, Oct 27, 2014.

  1. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Oct 27, 2014

    There has been a huge glut of teachers in nearly all specialties in the whole state of California for years now. All of a sudden there are a few news articles the past few weeks claiming there is a "shortage." I am a credentialed teacher in CA in several subjects who hasn't been looking for work in K-12 for a few years, so I am curious to hear any first-hand accounts from folks who have looked this season, and found it easier than in the past or just as difficult as ever, or someone who may know the hiring numbers of different districts. I don't believe for a second that there is a "shortage" all of a sudden, and of course subject area matters as always, but if there is indeed evidence there is less of a glut than there has been, perhaps I will throw my hat in the ring again for next year. Thanks.
     
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  3. Jen84

    Jen84 Companion

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    Oct 28, 2014

    I had heard that California teachers had developed a bad reputation (budget cuts, bad economy, etc.) and therefore, not as many people were going into the profession. With older teachers retiring, they are saying there are not as many new teachers available to take their spot. I have no idea if this is true, it is just what I have heard. Although I will say that I had more interviews this season and ended up with two offers.
     
  4. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Oct 28, 2014

    I have been hearing for years and years (since I was still a kid myself in school) about the number of retirees and a consequence shortage of teachers in California (where I was born and raised my whole life). I have yet to see it and certainly don´t believe it.
     
  5. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Oct 29, 2014

    TamiJ - Exactly, I have stopped believing anything I've heard that hasn't directly come from job seekers for years now. I have heard the "baby boomers retiring" myth for at least a decade now. My guess is that there may be only dozens of applicants for certain jobs now, instead of the hundreds they have been getting, and that somehow fits under the definition of "shortage."
     
  6. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Oct 29, 2014

    There's definitely not anything close to a shortage, but the market is becoming easier. Districts that had laid off everyone with less than 7 or so years of experience are hiring for the first time in YEARS. There is finally movement where there was none before. I'm not sure how many applications these districts are getting, though.

    So yes, there is less of a glut. I'm not just sure how MUCH less.
     
  7. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    Oct 29, 2014

    The statistic I've seen is that enrollment in teacher prep programs in CA has declined by about 50%, or 22,000 people, from 2008 to 2013. That, plus the money Prop 30 brought in, has definitely improved the teaching job market in CA.
     
  8. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    Oct 29, 2014

    I spoke with the person in charge of hiring in one of the larger districts in California. I was told that the requirement of lowering class sizes to get the funds through LCFF and the lowering of people applying to credentials in the last few years due to the limited job availability and then the continued retirement of the baby boom generation all are happening at the same time. So yes there is a shortage. We still were missing around 20 classroom teachers three weeks ago. I also was told districts were scrambling across the state at the beginning of the year.
     
  9. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    I'm super curious about what part of the state you're in. There's not a shortage in the areas I'm familiar with. (Not trying to second guess you - I am genuinely curious!)

    I HAVE heard about districts having trouble getting SpEd teachers, but that's really nothing new. I haven't heard of any trouble getting elementary teachers, though.
     
  10. gemgirlxoxo

    gemgirlxoxo Rookie

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    Nov 1, 2014

    Sorry if I'm hijacking the thread, but do any of you Californians know what the job outlook is like for ESL teachers? I have wanted to move to CA for the longest time but haven't even been considering it because I heard the job outlook there is the same or worse than where I am in NY.
     
  11. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Since 2003 or thereabouts, gemgirlxoxo, all California teaching credentials have included coursework that's intended to help the bearer teach English language learners, once they're past the very beginning stage so they can function in a sheltered-English setting. That's going to sound like bad news from your perspective. But the state has also just launched a credential specifically in English language development - I devoutly hope it's for teachers of beginning learners of English - so that might be good news for you.

    I'll add that California's a pretty big place. Where, roughly, were you thinking about?
     
  12. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I know that in the Central Valley (Ca) it is easier for teachers to find jobs now. My P told me this in the beginning of the year that the town I'm in, and the nearby large city is hiring. This is still true now. This meant for us a lot of vacancies. We had teachers who did not want to work in alternative ed, but took it because there were no other options, and now they left to work in easier circumstances. Teachers can be a bit more picky now.
    My daughter told me in the beginning of the year that some of her teachers left during the first week. There was one who went to work at the best district in the nearby city, came in during the first week in the morning, got all her stuff and left.
     
  13. teacherwithlove

    teacherwithlove Comrade

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    Nov 1, 2014

    I work in the Central Valley of California and I have seen the shortage first hand. 5 years ago I could not find a district to hire me as a fresh out of the program candidate. NOW- my district has had to hire over 100 interns after hiring about 200 NEW teachers! This district is still hiring! They are pretty much placing job fliers in places like Starbucks and McDonalds. It's crazy here!
     
  14. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    I am in the middle of Bay Area.
     
  15. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Super interesting! I guess I just pick the tougher areas to live in! It'll be interesting to see what happens...
     
  16. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Nov 5, 2014

    Thanks for the info. Glad to hear things are truly getting better for applicants in the Central Valley, that means some loosening up should also happen down here in SoCal within a year or two.
     
  17. Sam Aye M

    Sam Aye M Mr. Know-It-All

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    Nov 10, 2014

    I don't know if there is a shortage, but things are definitely getting better. I work in a small rural district in So Cal, and I'm pretty sure a very large percentage of our teachers will retire in the next 5 years or so. It already started this past year, and we're already having to replace them. The next several years should look better than the last several. It's interesting to see what is going on in the Central Valley. I applied to work there at a few districts as a psych a few years ago, but wasn't hired. I'm happy where I am, but would have liked to have worked there.
     
  18. hbcaligirl1985

    hbcaligirl1985 Cohort

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    Nov 11, 2014

    I'm in Huntington Beach, but I'm about to wipe my hands of the classroom setting and see if I can get another job in the education field. I can't survive on 800-900 a month from subbing. I don't have the option to move and would never give up my $800,000 house.
     
  19. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Nov 12, 2014

    I've heard a lot about baby boomer teachers hiring.

    As for the Central Valley I've heard that Tulare is hiring interns like crazy because there's such a shortage. I have a few friends in the Visalia/Tulare/Delano area that have been hired as interns and they've barely began their programs. This gives me hope for getting a job sooner rather than later. I'd love to be in the classroom by this coming August.
     
  20. bison

    bison Habitué

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    Nov 14, 2014

    It's still near-impossible to find a job in the Los Angeles/Orange County metro (but not as bad as it was 2-3 years ago). However, I had classmates from my credential program who received jobs offers on the spot at job fairs if they were willing to move to the Central Valley. There are plenty of jobs there. A few went, most didn't.
     
  21. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Nov 14, 2014

    Doesn't sound like a shortage problem to me. There are plenty of teachers out there. It seems like a problem with shortages in certain districts or schools because for some reason they can't attract teachers. That is no reason to push more people into teaching. It won't solve the problem.

    So, what is wrong with Central Valley (not being a CA person)?
     
  22. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Nov 14, 2014

    Central Valley... There's good and bad.
    Good: rent is cheap. I live 20 minutes from a major city (in a smaller city) and rent is about $500 / month cheaper here, compared to Southern California. Or maybe even more. So your money goes longer. Not a lot of night life in the city (compared to Southern Cali) but plenty of outdoorsy things, mountains, lakes, San Francisco is about 2.5 hours away, etc.
    Bad: air quality. I'm battling allergies right now (can't decide if it's allergies or cold) but I never had them before until I moved here. Last Friday the air quality was so bad that we had to stay indoors, most football games were canceled because it was a level 5.
    Crime. At least where I live it's super bad. Gangs everywhere and poverty is high. That makes break-ins and burglaries, robberies almost a daily thing. I was a victim of a crime 4 times in the last 18 months, and only once in the prior 39 years.

    Our district needs teachers badly because not a lot of people want to work in alternative ed. Yes, it can be hard, but administration is awesome, and so is the district. I feel that I'm cared about as a person and as a teacher.
    Other districts probably need teachers because most people will not relocate here for a teaching job, (I did, but that's rare) and as far as I know there is only one major university with a teaching credential program, which is not that many. (In larger cities they have 4-5 or more universities with a credential program)
     
  23. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    I don't know about numbers for permanent positions, but there was a recent article in the local paper about a lack of substitute teachers. Apparently we now have about 1/3 as many subs as we did a couple of years ago. This leads me to believe that more teachers are finding permanent positions if fewer people are subbing.

    I think a lot of it has to do with the state/local budgets having turned a corner and districts being able to hire teachers back after the layoffs of 2008-9. I know our district has lowered class sizes by hiring more teachers (I am one of them and so grateful!).
     
  24. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 15, 2014

    So Cal is definitely still the worst place for hiring. I graduated in winter 2011, and a few of the people in my cohort were just finally able to get full time district positions in the OC area this year, two hiring seasons later. It's still super tight, I know, but it seems like things are on the upswing. Slowly.
     
  25. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    I think the substitute shortages that look like they really are indeed starting to happen in some spots are a good harbinger for the future for full-time teachers. But you're going to have a hard time trying to convince me it has anything to do with baby-boomers retiring, the retirement rate has been steady for years and will be steady for years. Kids just smartened up the last few years and didn't want to go into a field with a huge glut, so the amount of teachers who are being minted has dropped. Not a shortage by any stretch of the imagination, but maybe the balance has shifted a bit and teachers who don't have inside connections will soon stand a fighting chance of landing a job. But of course once districts can claim they have a "shortage" again they will bring in cheap H1Bs and TFAs.
     
  26. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Nov 18, 2014

    Linguist,

    I'm in Central Ca as well. Through Cal State Teach you can be pretty much anywhere in CA as long as you can student teach at an elementary school. Both Fresno State and CSU Bakersfield have Cal State Teach Branches.
     
  27. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I'm a little north of Fresno.
    Today at our meeting my P said that they had interviews for our resource position. There was 1 person, but my P had something important to do, so they asked if they should reschedule. She said if we have 'a person with a pulse' to interview, do not let her go.
    This is how much we need people. I believe they hired her. (not because they're so desperate, she was also great).
    We still have many positions available.
     
  28. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I concur with all above statements! Plus, we're only 30 minutes away from each other, so I know exactly what you're talking about.
     
  29. sean480000

    sean480000 Rookie

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    I am currently looking for a public school teaching job, I took a private school job just to build experience yet I can't wait to move on. In California you also need your Cset and Cbest scores on top of having letters of rec that are no more than 2 years old. I am hoping this to land a full time position for the 2015-2016 school year.
     
  30. gemgirlxoxo

    gemgirlxoxo Rookie

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    I've never been to CA. Are there any desirable parts of the Central Valley? It sounds pretty bad from what some of you wrote. Also, is it all inland? How far from the coast and southern Cali( where I really want to live)?
     
  31. MacGuffin

    MacGuffin Companion

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    Central valley desirable? Well depends on what you desire I suppose. It is not too far a trip from some great outdoors options and there are several large cities with most of the usual trappings. The last time supply and demand favored applicants, over a dozen years ago now, the central valley was certainly advertising lots of openings all up and down the coast and offering signing bonuses, so if history repeats it should be a go-to spot for gigs again within a year or two.
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    From the California's border with Mexico in the south to its border with Oregon in the north is a bit under 800 miles via Interstate 5. For about 460 of those miles, I-5 takes a very nearly straight-line course through the Central Valley.

    You could visualize it like this: take an outline map of California and cover it in sand, then shove the sand to the edges of the map leaving a kidney-basin-shaped trough in the middle. That trough is the Central Valley, running from the rather spectacular descent out of the mountains north of Los Angeles up to where Redding marks the transition to the mountains that form the valley's northern boundary.

    The Central Valley used to be an inland sea; the land is correspondingly low and flat, and and in summer it's hot, especially in the south around Bakersfield. Wheat was farmed in the Valley as early as the Gold Rush, but other crops - everything from lettuce and corn through cotton and grapes to an astonishing array of tree fruits and, so help me, rice - depend very heavily on irrigation.

    If you like mountains, the east Valley is not a bad place to be. Most of the Valley's water - and a certain amount of Southern California's - comes from the Sierra Nevada mountain range that forms the valley's eastern edge and separates California from Nevada; magnificent Yosemite is there, and so is Lake Tahoe, and, farther south than one might think, lofty Mount Whitney, which at 14,000+ feet is the tallest mountain in the continental US. The Sierras are tall enough that they still sport some glaciers, global warming notwithstanding. Most of the major cities from Sacramento southward - Stockton, Modesto, Merced, Fresno, Visalia, Bakersfield - are located in the east valley, in or fairly near the Sierra foothills.

    If you like getting tans on beaches, the Valley is less attractive. One needs to cross the unimaginatively named Coast Range (the lower mountains that form the west rim of the Valley) to get to the coast. From Bakersfield due west to the Central Coast region around San Luis Obispo is 100 miles, plus or minus, by road - but the beaches can be rather chilly for swimming and sunbathing, because the warm currents that flow north along the coast from Mexico start giving out by the time they get to Santa Barbara. It's fine wine country, however.
     
  33. teacherwithlove

    teacherwithlove Comrade

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    My district is a big district and we keep getting families moving here from LA/Orange County since the housing is way cheaper... compare a 2000 sq foot house for 200k in the central valley and a 2000 sq foot house for 800k+ in the OC...

    On that note, my district recently opened 2 new schools to serve 2-4k students each. One is a K-5 and the other is a 6-8 middle school. Because of this, my district hired a ton of new hires. I've also heard that many retirees have received "Golden Handshakes" to make way for new teachers. Also, our union got us 3.5% raise last year and this year a 7.5% raise with full benefits is in the talks. We are some of the best paid teachers in the Central Valley.
     
  34. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    7.5% ?? Wow, nice. We got a 3 % raise last year and that was nice, along with a higher district contribution for the insurance, so that was also another $100 / month :)
     
  35. teacherwithlove

    teacherwithlove Comrade

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    A neighboring district just received a 15% raise negotiation over the next 3 years!
     
  36. matherine

    matherine Rookie

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    Hey! I wanted to jump in on this California thread since I'm thinking of moving there this summer. I have my license in Colorado and it sounds pretty easy to get a license in California. I was told that I have a year from when I get the license to satisfy the Basic Skills Requirement. Will schools hire me without the basic skills test completed?

    I am specifically interested in moving to the bay area and would love to hear any opinions about what it's like working/getting hired in districts there.
     
  37. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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  38. matherine

    matherine Rookie

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    I looked through that leaflet and the table says that Colorado doesn't have an exam that fulfills the basic skills requirement.
     
  39. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    That seems odd. How long have you had your license? Did you take any basic-skills test?
     
  40. matherine

    matherine Rookie

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    I've had my license for a few years. I took a test called PLACE that's specific to Colorado and isn't recognized by California apparently.
     
  41. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Hm. You might have been licensed, then, before the feds started leaning on states about basic skills tests.

    Schools can't allow you to teach without CBEST - that's a matter of state law. You might check to see whether you can take it in Colorado at one of Pearson's test centers: info is at www.ctcexams.nesinc.com.
     

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