|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 7, 2012
Washington, DC – Today, MetLife, Inc. released the MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Teachers, Parents, and the Economy. In response, Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former governor of West Virginia, made the following statement:
“The MetLife survey demonstrates that the shortages of morale and money need to be resolved if the nation is to have a more innovative, effective, and efficient education system.
“The nation depends on its teachers more than ever to help all students graduate with the high-level skills necessary to succeed in college and a career, but teacher job satisfaction has fallen to the lowest level in more than twenty years, according to today’s survey. At the same time, more teachers report they are likely to leave the profession while others feel that their jobs are not secure because of budget cuts.
“If you believe as I do that the best economic stimulus is a diploma, then the best job creator is a well-prepared, well-equipped, highly effective teacher.
“Over the past two decades, the attrition rate of first-year teachers—now the largest group within the occupation—has increased by more than 40 percent. It is estimated that up to 50 percent of new teachers leave after five years. As a result, today’s typical teacher has just one to two years of experience, compared to fifteen years in 1987.
“The nation needs a more organized, rational approach to teacher development. Job satisfaction is linked with adequate opportunities for professional development, time to collaborate with other teachers, more preparation and supports to engage parents effectively, job security, and feelings of respect as a professional.”
The Alliance for Excellent Education is a Washington, DC-based national policy and advocacy organization that works to improve national and federal policy so that all students can achieve at high academic levels and graduate from high school ready for success in college, work, and citizenship in the twenty-first century. For more information about the Alliance for Excellent Education, please visit www.all4ed.com.