Administrators are being pushed to increase class sizes due to teacher vacancies, according to data recently released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), according to a report in Education Slice.
School leaders rely on other strategies, too, for handling shortages. About 40% say they used their teachers and staff to perform duties outside of their intended role, while 24% share teachers and staff with other schools.
The shortages have other effects on school life: disruptions in student transportation; fewer extracurricular activities; and reduced student services.
Overall, one in five schools say they have multiple teacher vacancies, a problem that especially affects large schools, those in high poverty neighborhoods, and those with enrollments primarily of students of color.
The data reflects improvements compared with a year earlier, but also underlines how fallout from the pandemic continues. NCES Commissioner Peggy Carr said in a statement that it “does signal progress,” while also expressing concern about the large share of students behind academically.