Collaborating to Address the Math and Science Teacher Shortage: A State-University-Business Partnership

Recent studies have pointed to the critical role of a highly qualified teaching workforce in raising mathematics and science achievement. However, states and schools face a host of challenges in recruiting, preparing and retaining enough highly qualified teachers: an aging teacher workforce, poor pay and working conditions, and rapid enrollment growth represent a few of these challenges. According to the Council of Chief State School Officers, the national teaching workforce includes an estimated 331,000 mathematics and science teachers in grades 7-12 alone. The demand for more and better trained teachers in these subjects is expected to increase due to requirements of No Child Left Behind, enrollment growth, and state mandated requirements that students take additional advanced coursework in mathematics and science. Despite some gains, many students—and in particular, those in high-poverty and rural schools—still lack access to a highly-trained teacher in these critical disciplines.