Monday Numbers: A closer look at the slowdown in teacher attrition

By: - February 3, 2020 5:04 am

The State Board of Education’s “Annual Report on the State of the Teaching Profession” shows a steady decline in teacher attrition in recent years. 

The board will discuss the report this week at its monthly board meeting Feb. 5-6. 

The report shows a teacher turnover rate of 7.5 percent for the 2018-19 school year. The rate was 8.09 percent the previous year and 8.70 for the 2016-17 school year. 

The national teacher attrition rate is around 8 percent, according to federal labor and education departments. 

Only teachers who have left the state or the teaching profession are included in North Carolina’s turnover rate. Teachers who leave one district for another are listed under a category titled mobility. The state’s mobility rate is 4.53 percent.   

North Carolina employed 94,672 teachers during the 2018-19 school year. 

Here are the reasons 7,115 of them left: 

60.7% — The percentage of teachers who said the left for personal reasons. 

8.0% — The percentage of teachers whose departures were initiated by school districts. 

23.7% — The percentage of teachers whose departures were listed as beyond the control of school districts. 

8% — The percentage of teachers who said they left for other reasons. 

And here’s a look at who left: 

6.8% — The percentage of experienced teachers who left employment in North Carolina’s public schools. 

11.3% — The percentage of beginning teachers who left North Carolina classrooms. 

16.7% — The percentage of Teach for America teachers who left before their contracts ended. 

11.1%The percentage of Visiting International Faculty (VIF) teachers who left before their contracts ended. 

13.6% — The percentage of Lateral Entry Teachers who left North Carolina schools.        

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Greg Childress
Greg Childress

Education Reporter Greg Childress covers all aspects of public education in North Carolina, including debates over school funding, curricula, privatization, and teacher pay and licensing.