Educator Quality and Quantity (EQQ)
Coalition for Education Equity’s Educator Quality and Quantity Project is a multi-year effort to increase the number of Alaskans going into the teaching profession, better prepare them for Alaska schools, and retain them longer in their jobs. This work was developed to address CEAAC’s 2012 goal of increasing teacher production in Alaska, amidst concerns that quality teachers were in short supply across the state. Many school districts were (and still are) experiencing high rates of teacher turnover and increased difficulties recruiting new teachers.
Why does this matter?
Teacher turnover is expensive. Costs for replacing teachers (including recruitment and training costs) have been estimated at as much as $15-30 million annually in Alaska. These costs are debilitating to our school districts. But we also know that retaining quality teachers correlates with better student outcomes. It is better for our bottom line and for our students to retain quality teachers.
Why more Alaskan teachers?
Research indicates that teachers from within Alaska stay longer and they have a better chance of being prepared for the environments and cultures in which they will work.
In 2014, CEAAC retained Jerry Covey and Dr. Barbara Adams to study this issue and make recommendations. Their report was released in 2015 and contained recommendations that addressed two major goals:
1. Expand and Improve the quality of our educator workforce (recommendations that address teacher recruitment and teacher preparation);
2. Develop and Keep the workforce (recommendations that address professional development and teacher retention).
EQQ2, prepared in October 2015, presents a proposal for implementation of the top six recommendations from the EQQ report.
The Research based Educator Systems Support (RESS) pilot study is being conducted in five of our member school districts. We expect the ongoing and final analysis to provide a rich resource for school districts and statewide education stakeholders.
The first of four surveys was conducted in this year-long pilot study with districts across the system in September 2017. Topics covered work environment, leadership, community, efficacy, quality of life and strengthening the workforce. Results from this survey will provide important information for participating school districts and potentially provide insights into state policy development. Additional surveys will be conducted in November 2017, March 2018 and May 2018 and reports will be shared following each of the surveys. The first report is below.