Students graduating with education degrees in math, biology and elementary/collaborative will find it much easier to find jobs in the Tennessee Valley, a college professor said.
Others may have to move out of state, said Debra Baird, dean of the Education Department at Athens State University.
Proration and shrinking education budgets have eliminated the near job guarantee once in place for college graduates with degrees in education.
"The jobs are just not as plentiful as they once were, but we're always going to need teachers," Baird said.
Decatur City Schools Superintendent Ed Nichols expanded on Baird's assessment, saying foreign-language teachers are also in demand.
"When we have positions for math, science, and foreign language posted, we don't have the depth of applicants that we do for other positions," Nichols said.
Elementary education are the most sought jobs. Nichols said they have had as many as 300 applicants apply for an elementary position.
Baird said teachers on the elementary collaborative tract at Athens State generally don't have problems finding jobs because they are also certified as special education teachers.
School systems recognize that it is "a bargain to have one teacher certified in both," she said.
According to the U.S. Department of Education, Alabama's teacher shortage this year was in the arts, grades K-12. In grades 7-12, the state also needed teachers for English, family consumer science, foreign language, history, math and science.
Special education and speech instructors and teachers certified to work with the visually/hearing impaired were needed in all grade levels, the report showed.
Athens State polled 98 of the 221 students who earned teaching degrees in the spring 2012. Baird said 27 of the 98 had gotten jobs.
Exact numbers were not immediately available, but some of the others in the surveys could have gotten jobs if they had moved to larger cities.
"A lot of our graduates are older with families and didn't want to move their children," Baird said.
Deangelo McDaniel can be reached at 256-340-2469 or email@example.com.
|High School Sports||@DecaturPreps|