The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction made its 2007-2008 Annual Report on the Reasons Educators Leave Teaching available on the Web recently.
In 2007-2008, resigning to teach elsewhere and retirement ranked at the top of the list of reasons for teacher turnover.
During the last school year, of the 568 certified teachers in the Vance County Schools system, 117 teachers left employ. Eighteen of those teachers were tenured. This gave Vance a turnover rate of 20.60%.
The high rate of non-tenured teacher turnover indicates that the majority of those leaving Vance County do so within their first three years of teaching. It is unknown how many of these teachers are provided through Teach for America; however, it is likely that a significant number of the 99 non-tenured teachers who left the county during the last school year were Teach for America teachers at the end of their two-year obligation.
Warren County had a turnover rate for that same year of 19.90%, Franklin had a rate of 14.78%, Granville had a rate of 12.39%, and Wake County had a turnover rate of 11.67%.
The highest turnover rate for 2007-2008 was Weldon City Schools at 43.57%. The lowest was Graham County at 4.55%.
The five year turnover rate for Vance County was 20.90%, second only to Weldon City Schools and Edgecomb County schools.
Warren County had a five-year turnover rate of 17.89%; Franklin County’s was 17.40%; Granville County’s was 14.83%; and Wake County’s was 10.52%.
The report also noted correlations between high turnover and a higher rate of disagreement of responders to the Teacher Working Conditions Survey to items such as “Overall, my school is a good place to teach and learn” and “The school leadership consistently enforces rules for student conduct.”
Statewide, the report indicated that about 24% of the turnover could be reduced. Those reasons include leaving to teach in a private school, leaving to teach in another state, dissatisfaction with teaching, and a change in career.