Oklahoma has now set a record for the number of emergency-certified teachers its hired this year. The state has been experiencing a statewide shortage of teachers, largely due to low teacher salaries and the problem of educators moving to other states for better pay and benefits.
Now, as KOSU reports, the state has brought on a record 1,400 emergency-certified teachers to staff Oklahoma’s classrooms. That’s a staggering jump from five years ago, when the state only needed to hire 32 emergency teachers. This year Oklahoma has already hired 250 more emergency-certified teachers than last year, and it’s only August.
The majority of these emergency teachers have no experience in education at all. To hire emergency-certified teachers, a school district must prove that they haven’t been able to find any traditionally certified teachers.