Math teacher shortage myth?

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Pi-R-Squared, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. Pi-R-Squared

    Pi-R-Squared Groupie

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    Jun 26, 2013

    Now I just read an article that says the math and science teacher shortage is just a myth! Someone tell me that's not true! For the math / science teachers reading, has it been easy pickings or tough to find work??
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jun 26, 2013

    It really depends on the geographic location. In my district we do have a shortage of qualified math teachers. In many other districts, there is an abundance of qualified math teachers.
     
  4. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    Just checked out my hometown and the only teachers they're looking for are middle grades science & math, high school science & math, and SpED.
     
  5. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    I was credentialed in 2011 and added endorsements to improve my job prospects, so am credentialed to teach Math, Biology and Physics. I was able to find a one year temporary job for the 2011-12 year. The job that year was teaching biology. My current job is as a middle school math teacher. I wouldn't say it was easy pickings though. It took 11 interviews to land the Bio job in mid-August (two days before school started) and 14 interviews the next summer to land my current job in mid-July.
     
  6. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    I'm sure it depends on region. I personally know a certified math teacher who has been looking for 3 years now.
     
  7. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    He/she should consider relocating! There is a demand for math and science in my district. Math with Physics certification would get picked up pretty quickly.
     
  8. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    I had 6 job offers in 2 weeks when word got out that I was looking so in Louisiana there is shortage of certified science teachers.
     
  9. mathgeek12

    mathgeek12 Rookie

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    I felt like it was a myth! I went to college to be a math teacher and graduated in May 2012 and have literally been on 30+ interviews. I feel like I've had interviews in at least half of the districts in North Jersey. My college certainly had left me with the impression that schools would be falling at my feet to hire me. I know the number of interviews seems like a lot, but I was surprised with how competitive it is out there. I ended up with a 3 week LTS position in September and a leave replacement position from mid-March to the end of the school year; both positions were in tough districts.
     
  10. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    I think it depends on where you are located. In my area, you could walk into most schools and walk out with a job. Chances are that you will be making more than most of the teachers in the school with all the sign on bonuses and critical pay.
     
  11. MrTeach11

    MrTeach11 Rookie

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    I think the term "shortage" is the myth part. However, I do believe there are less qualified candidates compared to other subject areas. I also am in NJ and just graduated this past May. I was lucky and was able to secure a job for September on my 4th interview. For every application I filled out (approx 30) I knew there were MANY other candidates sending in their resume as well, including most of my former classmates and I would still have to have a great interview.
     
  12. chemistrynerd

    chemistrynerd Rookie

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    I graduated in 2012 in the Northeast with certifications in Math and Chemistry, and I've had an easy job in the south, but it wasn't as easy in the northeast. I did end up getting a job as a Chem teacher in the Northeast, but it took a few months of applying. The south (like NC) like math/science teachers, esp. at the HS level.
     
  13. iloveschool

    iloveschool Companion

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    My school is currently looking for two HS math teachers! Anyone want to move to the coast of Texas?
     
  14. kevmic28

    kevmic28 Companion

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    The school I am leaving in East Texas is looking for 3 elementary math teachers. 3rd, 4th, and 5th.
     
  15. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    My mom teaches high school English and has been on the hiring committee forever. She said her school has trouble getting good math teachers. There's always enough applicants, but they either leave for a higher paying district or their contracts are not renewed. There is evidently a lot of turnover in their math department.
     
  16. Barbd

    Barbd Rookie

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    Jun 27, 2013

    It is entirely based on your geography.

    I graduated in 08. Since then, and counting the upcoming school year, I know of less than two dozen middle school/high school math positions that opened within an hour driving distance from me.

    Now, if I wanted to move closer to the biggest city near me (1.5+ hours away), I could almost have my pick of math positions. I know of 5 open right now.

    And that tricky little "qualified" part. I've known of several math teachers who were barely qualified or have taken the classes, but not yet passed the tests.
     
  17. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    The best prospects to get a job seem to be math, science, special education, or bilingual. I'm not sure that it's really a shortage (depending on area), but there are definitely more jobs around the U.S. for math and science teachers.
     
  18. Global Teacher

    Global Teacher Companion

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    In general it is still easier to get a math or science job than it is to get a job in most other subjects.

    However, the teacher shortage of the early 2000s has definitely turned into a teacher glut in all subjects. It can be tough to get any teaching job in the US.
     
  19. mathteacher2

    mathteacher2 Rookie

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    I agree with MrTeach11, it's not really a shortage of applicants, but a shortage of qualified applicants. My coworker who's on the hiring committee to fill my position has disclosed with me that they've been doing a lot of interviews, but they are not finding anyone qualified to fill my position.

    When I first interviewed with that job (right out of college), it took a lot of applying, waiting, interviews, and it wasn't until the end of June that I was called for my first interview and end of July until I had my second interview and the job offer.
     
  20. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    I agree with MrTeach11. Truly qualified math teachers are rare. By that I mean more than just qualified by paper.
     
  21. Rainbowbird

    Rainbowbird Groupie

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    Jun 28, 2013

    I have seen a lot of ads for high school science and math as compared to elem. ed. Several of the former every week and almost none of the latter.
     
  22. Pi-R-Squared

    Pi-R-Squared Groupie

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    What does it mean to be "truly qualified?"
     
  23. mathteacher2

    mathteacher2 Rookie

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    I can't speak as to what a2z meant by it, but in my opinion, not just someone who has the correct certificate or educational background, but who truly stands out. Someone who uses hands on activities and not just direct instruction, knowledge of DI and how to meet the needs of all learners, (in my state) experience with common core standards, etc.
     
  24. AdamnJakesMommy

    AdamnJakesMommy Habitué

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    I just took the Middle Grades Praxis in mathematics after teaching it to 7th/8th graders (I was an alternative classroom teacher and had to teach all core subjects despite not being certified (or confident at all) to teach math/ela). So, after teaching it, I fell in love with it and decided to take the praxis because I feel I am a qualified middle grades mathematics teacher. With that said, I could never, ever ever do high school math. I'm confident now in the material through 8th grade, and that's it. So, IMHO, if you can do high school-level math and get that "paper" qualification, you are an amazing person indeed. I know I couldn't get that paper qualification...
     
  25. CanIteachPhysic

    CanIteachPhysic Rookie

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    Has it gotten easier?

    Mathgeek - I noticed your post from last year. I've been lurking here for a few months and just signed up. I am looking to get a HS teaching job in math or physics.

    Can you (or anyone) tell me if things are getting easier? I'm in entering via the NJ Alternate Route program and live in North Jersey (Morris County). Reading some of these posts has made me wonder if this is the best choice for me, especially since the pay will be a significant pay cut (40-60%).
     
  26. ktmiller222

    ktmiller222 Cohort

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    I don't even know what to think anymore. I always hear people say they need Spec. Ed teachers. I have a masters and experience (great references) as a Spec. Ed teacher and I'm going on 5 years without a job!
     
  27. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    This was the downside to feeling as though upper elementary school was a better fit for me as a teacher. My initial goal was to teach junior high or high school mathematics, and I have my BS degree in mathematics, K-12 mathematics endorsement, and then my K-8 teaching cert. It would've likely made my job search much easier and quicker if I aimed for mathematics positions!
     
  28. AdamnJakesMommy

    AdamnJakesMommy Habitué

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    I think it definitely depends on region. For example, I often hear on here that Social Studies is a saturated field. In my area, this is not the case. It isn't EASY to find a position, I can attest to that, but I know in the county I interned in I heard the principal say routinely "it is hard to find a social studies teacher around here." If I didn't live so far from that district (hence why I left), I would without a doubt have a social studies position by now.

    The same is true, I'm sure, for all subjects.
     

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