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Teacher Tenure and Teacher Shortages in the State of Missouri

On September 11th, the Missouri State Legislature’s Joint Committee on Education met for the second of four hearings on teacher tenure and human resources in Missouri. The state’s teacher tenure policies were debated, and specific areas of teacher shortages were identified.

The debate over teacher tenure in Missouri isn’t new. Tenure supports believe that tenure promotes teaching as a valued profession, and that tenured teachers are best positioned to become student advocates. Supporters are concerned that eliminating teacher tenure will drive good teachers out of the state.

Opponents of teacher tenure feel that tenure makes it too expensive and too difficult to fire ineffective teachers. As a result, according to those who oppose tenure, teachers remain in Missouri’s educational system who would otherwise be fired.

The Joint Committee also discussed a Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education study showing teacher shortages during the 2013-14 academic year. The eleven areas of teacher shortage were identified as: blind/partially sighted aides; deaf/hearing impaired aides; English as a second language; gifted programs; severely developmentally delayed students; school psychologists; school psychological examiners; physics; foreign languages; and computers/information technology.

To help you better understand teacher tenure in the State of Missouri, MOParent has published posts explaining teacher tenure and discussion of common misperceptions about tenure.

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