NOVA District PTA leadership joined leadership from the Virginia PTA at the 2018 Virginia Teacher Retention Summit at University of Virginia on October 23. Summit participants heard from researchers, data analysts, and various stakeholders concerning the importance of recruiting and retaining Virginia’s great teachers. Additionally, Summit participants engaged with each other in small working groups to provide policy recommendations to be addressed during the 2019 Virginia General Assembly session.
Every student in Virginia and across the nation deserves to have a great teacher in the classroom and years of evidence show that a great teacher will prepare a student for the global economy no matter the path – college, post-secondary training, the military, or career.
However, according to the according to the The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis, state support will be down 9.1 percent per student for the 2018-2019 school year in real dollars compared to 2008-2009. The lower levels of funding have forced many schools to cut back on instructors and school staff and the numbers are still down from where they used to be. Since 2009, staffing in Virginia schools has declined by 1,242 positions while enrollment has grown by more than 50,000 students. This means larger class sizes and fewer supports for students. At the same time, the needs of students have also been changing. The number of economically disadvantaged students has increased by almost 90,000 students since 2009 and English learners in Virginia schools have increased by over 54,000.
VIRGINIA CURRENTLY RANKS 41ST IN THE NATION IN STATE FUNDING OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS. VIRGINIA TEACHERS ARE EARNING MORE THAN $6700 LESS THAN THE NATIONAL AVERAGE SALARY FOR TEACHERS!
The time is NOW to tell your elected officials that investment in Virginia students and teachers are the key to Virginia’s future – https://www.vapta.org/advocacy/take-action-virginia.
The time is NOW to vote on Tuesday, November 6 for candidates who are supportive of Virginia’s students and teachers, high-quality education with wraparound supports, and safe and health learning environments.
Below are pictures from the event.