What's the Cost of Teacher Turnover?

High teacher turnover—or churn—undermines student achievement and consumes valuable staff time and resources. It also contributes to teacher shortages throughout the country, as roughly 6 of 10 new teachers hired each year are replacing colleagues who left the classroom before retirement. Research shows that urban districts can, on average, spend more than $20,000 on each new hire, including school and district expenses related to separation, recruitment, hiring, and training. These investments don’t pay their full dividend when teachers leave within 1 or 2 years after being hired. Turnover rates vary by school and district, with those in rural and urban settings or that serve high percentages of student in poverty experiencing the highest rates. Use this tool to estimate the cost of teacher turnover in your school or district and to inform a local conversation about how to attract, support, and retain a high-quality teacher workforce. High-leverage strategies are highlighted below.


The Latest News From Around the Country

Sarasota Lawmaker Files Bill Aimed At Easing Florida’s Teacher Shortage, WUSF, January 11, 2019

Local school district finds low teacher pay is also hurting alternative recruitment efforts, WCSC (South Carolina), January 10, 2019

Here’s why more money for Indiana schools may not mean more money for teachers, Indianapolis Star, January 10, 2019

Playing for keeps: pay hike curbs loss of teachers, The Mountaineer (North Carolina), January 10, 2019

Teachers union optimistic as session begins, Herald-Dispatch (South Carolina), January 10, 2019

New 2020 school budget prioritizes increased enrollment, teacher salaries, WDVM (Maryland), January 9, 2019

Fayette teachers participate in statewide walk-in (WITH VIDEO), Register-Herald (West Virginia), January 9, 2019

Connecticut Schools Facing Substitute Teacher Shortages, NBC CT, January 8, 2019

Report Shows High Teacher Vacancies In Arizona Schools, KJZZ, January 8, 2019

School Board to focus on retaining teachers, Daily Commercial (Florida), January 7, 2019

Teacher turnover at highest rate, KITV (Hawaii), January 7, 2019

Hiring firm eyes dearth of substitute teachers in school districts, News-Gazette (Illinois), January 7, 2019

Teacher Pay Among House GOP Priorities, Inside Indiana Business, January 7, 2019

Ariz. Schools chief Kathy Hoffman vows to fight for educator pay, school funding, Arizona Republic, January 7, 2019

Low Pay, Strong Local Economy Causing Substitute Teacher Shortage In Mass. School Districts, WBUR (Massachusetts), January 6, 2019

SC teachers’ patience waning as lawmakers again pledge to fix public education, The State (South Carolina), January 6, 2019

North Central West Virginia school officials seek to recruit teachers as nationwide shortage continues, Exponent Telegram, January 6, 2019

Knox County Schools struggles to cover classes with substitute teachers, Knoxville News Sentinel (Tennessee), January 6, 2019 

Here’s a look at the first education bills to hit the floor in Colorado, Colorado Chalkbeat, January 4, 2019

Will a teacher pay raise really happen this year in the state Legislature?, Sun Herald (Mississippi), January 4, 2019

Colorado teachers want the Legislature to know they aren’t done with #RedForEd, Fort Collins Coloradoan, January 4, 2019

A test of leadership, Journal Gazette (Indiana), January 4, 2019

South Carolina teachers could see a big pay increase if bill raises salaries to national average, WCSC, January 4, 2019

Northam’s proposed pay boost for teachers has local support, Winchester Star (Virginia), January 4, 2019

Teachers leaving jobs at a high rate; retaining efforts implemented by some schools, WDBJ (Wisconsin), January 4, 2019

Incoming PUSD Superintendent wants more CTE classes and to address teacher shortage, Parker Pioneer (South Dakota), January 3, 2019

Accelerated pathways deliver teachers into workforce sooner, Sacramento State News (California), January 3, 2019

Legislative session 2019: Will a teacher pay raise really happen this year?, Clarion Ledger (Mississippi), January 3, 2019

Education, pension and tax reform big issues facing South Carolina legislators in 2019, Greenville Journal, January 3, 2019

Waterbury’s Jahana Hayes part of history-making day in Washington, Fox 61 (Connecticut), January 3, 2019

Lawmaker seeks tweak to Florida retirement laws, to help with teacher shortfall, Tampa Bay Times, January 2, 2019

Tulsa World editorial: Record high emergency certifications show teacher shortage continues, Tulsa World (Oklahoma), January 2, 2019

WPI Cuts Cost, Offers Online Coursework to Help Combat National Math Teacher Shortage, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (Massachusetts), January 2, 2019

Wanted: Substitute teachers, positions available immediately, Rockland/Westchester Journal News (New York), January 2, 2019

Editorial: Fast-track teacher program belongs at front of the class, Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico), January 1, 2019

Local Leaders Say Teacher Shortage is Hurting Business, Flagstaff Business News (Arizona), December 31, 2018

‘You need all teachers’: Schools with diverse student populations still struggle to hire minority educators, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pennsylvania), December 29, 2018

The highest starting teacher base pay across Tulsa-area school districts, Tulsa World (Oklahoma), December 29, 2018

On lawmakers’ education agenda: school funding, safety and prekindergarten, Minneapolis Star-Tribune (Minnesota), December 29, 2018

Attracting More School Teachers, Wheeling News-Register (West Virginia), December 29, 2018

INSIGHT KANSAS: Teach for America and the Kansas teacher shortage, Hays Post, December 28, 2018

Effort to put ‘Virginia Loves Teachers’ on state license plates., CBS 19 News, December 28, 2018

Schools face teacher shortage, Rome News-Tribune (Georgia), December 27, 2018

Townsend introduces Red for Ed retaliation bill, Arizona Capital Times, December 27, 2018

Scholarships available to aid teacher shortage crisis, Wickenburg Sun (Arizona), December 26, 2018

KTSD to host summit on state teacher shortage, Ken-Ton Bee (New York), December 26, 2018

A grant to Monterey County Office of Education will fund special education teachers., Monterey County Now (California), December 26, 2018

How Local Universities Are Working To Retain More Teachers Amidst A Statewide Shortage, WESA (Pennsylvania), December 26, 2018

CCSD Asks State Lawmakers for Funding Help, Athens Flagpole (Georgia), December 26, 2018

More Oklahoma teachers are taking nontraditional paths to the classroom, and the trend is raising new state policy questions, Tulsa World, December 25, 2018

Oklahoma teachers still moonlighting despite pay raises, Daily Ardmoreite, December 24, 2018

More than 100 education bills already filed, but larger reform measures still in the works, Charleston Post and Courier (South Carolina), December 24, 2018

A Boost to Teacher Pay, Declining Enrollment, Arizona Public Media, December 24, 2018

New Mexico Highlands University offering teacher training alternative, Santa Fe New Mexican, December 22, 2018

Another bill aimed at #RedForEd? Lawmaker wants to impose fines for school closures, Arizona Republic, December 21, 2018

Hundreds of Idaho Teachers Leaving the Classroom Before Retirement Age, Idaho Education News, December 20, 2018

TUSD turns to international teachers as response to shortage, KOLD (Arizona), December 13, 2018

Transportation and teacher shortage at the top of CPS priorities, KMIZ (Missouri), December 13, 2018

37 SC education bills, teacher pay hike proposed in wake of Minimally Adequate series, Post and Courier (South Carolina), December 13, 2018

Certification, pay factors in shortage of technical teachers, Star-News (Alabama), December 13, 2018

Bangert: Indiana teacher pay raises: What your lawmakers say they will, and won’t, do, Journal & Courier, December 13, 2018

Unit 5 Advisory Committee On Subs Recommends Pay Raise, GLT (Illinois), December 12, 2018

Decatur City Schools in Dire Need of Substitute Teachers, WAAY (Alabama), December 12, 2018

Polk County teacher asks school board to join the fight against state teacher test, WFTS (Florida), December 12, 2018

$1M grant helping support Illinois teachers, WICS, December 12, 2018

Will the Governor’s pitch to boost teacher pay keep them in Virginia classrooms?, VirginiaFirst.com, December 12, 2018

Teaching group calls for raises, other reform from State House lobby, WLTX (South Carolina), December 12, 2018

Shortage of 7th and 8th grade math teachers in Barbour County, WRBL (Georgia), December 11, 2018

30 students sign up to be teachers with the Fresno Unified School District, KFSN (California), December 11, 2018

Lewiston launches plan to fill gap in substitute teacher shortage, Lewiston Tribune (Maine), December 11, 2018

Columbia schools seek solution to substitute shortage, Columbia Daily Tribune (Missouri), December 11, 2018

Portland schools may raise substitutes’ pay to stem shortage, The Forecaster (Maine), December 11, 2018

How JCPS plans to tackle inequality with its racial equity plan, Insider Louisville (Kentucky), December 11, 2018

A number of Dodd’s bills kick in Jan. 1 in California, Vallejo Times-Herald, December 10, 2018

WKU working to address teacher shortage, Bowling Green Daily News (Kentucky), December 10, 2018

Competency based education helps fill teacher shortage, WGEM (Illinois), December 10, 2018

$10K bump in NM teacher pay proposed, Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico), December 10, 2018

West Virginia in critical need of certified math teachers, Register-Herald Reporter (West Virginia), December 10, 2018

Teacher walkout possible in Indiana if General Assembly ignores pay issue. ‘We expect action in 2019.’, Indianapolis Star, December 10, 2018

Substitute Fair Hopes To Find Much-Needed Teachers, WJBC (Illinois), December 10, 2018

A welcome shift to Oklahoma education reform, NewsOK, December 10, 2018

Increase in minority teachers not keeping pace with influx of minority students, Connecticut Post, December 10, 2018

Tulsa World analysis: Some school districts still struggling to keep up in competitive hiring market after statewide teacher pay raises, Tulsa World (Oklahoma), December 10, 2018

Legislator disputes education funding shortage, Daily Times Leader (Mississippi), December 10, 2018

School Funding Formulas Remain a Concern for Montgomery Officials, Bethesda Magazine (Maryland), December 7, 2018

Forum addresses current issues in local and state education, WMBF (South Carolina), December 7, 2018

Kentucky state school board wants to make it easier to remove failing teachers, WRDB, December 7, 2018

Schools, colleges confront conundrum of teacher shortages, Rochester Business Journal (New York), December 7, 2018

Local colleges receive over $7 million in funding to help Latino students, future teachers, Salinas Californian, December 7, 2018

Change of course: Alternative teacher license brings real-world skills to classrooms, Grand Forks Herald (North Dakota), December 7, 2018

Trade workers in high demand on Space Coast but not enough students get trained | Rangel, Florida Today, December 7, 2018

QPS retirees help answer teacher shortage, Herald-Whig (Massachusetts), December 6, 2018

APS experiencing substitute teacher shortage, KRQE (New Mexico), December 6, 2018

Killeen: School district needs bilingual teachers, KWTX (Texas), December 6, 2018

Competency-based education pilot program benefits QPS hiring, Herald-Whig (Massachusetts), December 6, 2018

Members of legislature hear concerns of Marion County AFT representatives, WBOY (West Virginia), December 5, 2018

Franklin Co. Schools Seeing Increasing Shortage in Substitute Teachers, WTVQ (Kentucky), December 5, 2018

Upper Darby teachers overwhelmingly reject contract offer, plan protest, Philadelphia Inquirer (Pennsylvania), December 4, 2018

Wisconsin’s Controversial Proposal on Program Elimination, Inside Higher Ed, December 4, 2018

New program at Montana State University aims to combat rural teacher shortage, Billings Gazette, December 3, 2018

Need information about New Orleans teaching jobs? Here’s where to find it, Nola.com (Louisiana), December 3, 2018

Bill allowing subs with ‘skilled backgrounds’ passes committee, Ionia Sentinel Standard (Michigan), December 3, 2018

Budget surplus a chance to fully fund S.C. education system, Post and Courier (South Carolina), December 2, 2018

‘They will not break us.’ Pinellas teachers turn down a raise to press for better working conditions., Tampa Bay Times (Florida), December 1, 2018

PED releases teacher prep program grades, Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico), December 30, 2018

State schools chief addresses teacher shortage, school funding during Twin Falls visit, MagicValley.com (Idaho), November 29, 2018

State Commission Recommends Pay Hike for Maryland Teachers, WBOC, November 28, 2018

New School Board chair to focus on funding, teacher recruiting, Tampa Bay Times (Florida), November 28, 2018

MPUSD receives $750K grant for STEM teachers, Monterey Herald (California), November 28, 2018

DAUGAARD: Making progress on teacher pay, Rapid City Journal (South Dakota), November 28, 2018

Teacher Vacancies Impacting Chicago-Area Students and Taxpayers, NBC Chicago (Illinois), November 27, 2018

‘Indiana’s war on teachers is winning’: Here’s what superintendents say is causing teacher shortages, Chalkbeat Indiana, November 27, 2018

EPS superintendent: Teacher shortage not going away, Enid News & Eagle (Oklahoma), November 26, 2018

APS teacher shortage hits home, Albuquerque Journal (New Mexico), November 26, 2018

How Houston Plans To Help Fix The Statewide Shortage Of Computer Science Teachers, Houston Public Media (Texas), November 26, 2018

Salary history, teacher wage bills to come back next year, Journal Star (Illinois), November 25, 2018

As teachers flee Bay Area housing crisis, one school district tries new approach, Mercury News (California), November 25, 2018

Local superintendents discuss teacher shortage at West Coast breakfast, Holland Sentinel (Michigan), November 23, 2018

Teachers and School District Face  Off as Contract Showdown Looms, Oakland Post (California), November 23, 2018

Higher Ed Weighs In On K-12 Teacher Standards, NPR Illinois, November 21, 2018

OUR OPINION: Homegrown approach best solution on teacher shortage, Daily Journal (Mississsippi), November 20, 2018

Arizona’s Teacher Of The Year Talk About Professional Rewards, Struggles, KJZZ, November 20, 2018

Teacher pay, child protection among top priorities for state lawmakers in ‘tight budget’, Indianapolis Star (Indiana), November 20, 2018

Looking Into Process of Hiring Teachers: ‘You Send Your Kids There to School and You Hope You Can Trust Who They’re With’, KIMT (Minnesota), November 19, 2018

Kansas’ Teacher Recruitment Effort Attracts 3 Teachers, USNews, November 19, 2018

Tupelo High School program trains future educators, Daily Journal (Mississippi), November 18, 2018

Teacher Pay, Medical Marijuana Among Senate Dems’ Focus, Inside Indiana Business, November 16, 2018

No place like home: Beydler is Sikeston R-6’s first GYOT student teacher, Standard Democrat (Missouri), November 16, 2018

A ‘time bomb’ waiting to happen: New figures highlight critical shortage of special ed teachers, Hawaii News Now, November 15, 2018

Hawaii’s Teacher Shortage Is Getting Worse, Honolulu Civil Beat, November 15, 2018

FMU’s Teacher Cadet Program recognized as largest in the state, WBTW (South Carolina), November 15, 2018

Educators to SC lawmakers: Raise teacher pay, reduce student testing, Post and Courier (South Carolina), November 14, 2018

College of Education helping South Georgia State launch teacher education program, UNG Newsroom, November 14, 2018

Voters Widely Support Public Schools. So Why Is It So Hard to Pay for Them?, New York Times, November 14, 2018

Mississippi teacher shortage sparks a new change in licensing some educators, Clarion Ledger, November 13, 2018

Arizona schools chief says she will address teacher shortage, workload, KTAR, November 13, 2018

Strike a Chord: Teacher Shortage Impacts Success of Special Needs Children, WFUV (New York), November 13, 2018

EDITORIAL: It’s deja vu all over again with special ed teacher shortage, Chicago Sun-Times (Illinois), November 13, 2018

School board hardens rule to make it easier to hire substitute teachers, St. Augustine Record (Florida), November 13, 2018

UTSA and Northwest Vista College aim to diversify teacher pipeline with new program, UTSA Today (Texas), November 13, 2018

Shortage of reliable subs creates market for staffing, Delaware Business Times, November 13, 2018