Continuous Improvement of a Statewide Plan for Teacher Recruitment, Retention, and Recognition

Project lead: James Colyott

Illinois is experiencing a teacher shortage, and the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) is working to ensure that the state has an effective, diverse teaching corps to staff all K–12 classrooms. Key challenges affecting the Illinois teacher pipeline include a decrease in the number of teacher preparation program completers, lack of diversity in the teaching candidate pool, subject areas with growing demand, and recruitment of new teachers in Chicago and rural areas.

To support this work to build an effective, diverse teacher workforce, the Region 9 Comprehensive Center (R9CC) is collaborating with ISBE to use its strategic planning process to align and continuously improve statewide efforts for recruitment, retention, and recognition of effective teachers. In 2019–20, R9CC supported ISBE staff as they identified existing and planned initiatives to address the teacher shortage as well as the key local and state leaders who support these initiatives, and analyzed data to identify equity and diversity gaps in the teacher development pipeline. In 2020–21, R9CC is continuing to support ISBE staff as they determine additional data to collect, interview students and teachers, and engage diverse stakeholders to identify causes of equity and diversity gaps in the teacher development pipeline. As a result, ISBE will consider modifying existing and creating new initiatives to address the statewide teacher shortage.