Illinois had about 4,000 unfilled school jobs open last fall, and that shortage is expected to be greater this year because of the pandemic.
The information comes from a survey of school superintendents conducted in 2019. School staff in that count include teachers and paraprofessionals, such as aides, and administrators. Data for a new survey will be collected in September said Mark Klaisner, the President of the Illinois Association of Regional School Superintendents.
The Trump administration is now labeling teachers as essential workers. Some see it as a move to encourage school districts to open for in-person instruction for the fall semester amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
WSIU Radio contributor Pete Peterson is a retired college professor, and his wife, Anita, is a retired elementary school teacher. Pete says – pandemic or not – teachers are always essential.
Who should pay pension costs for Illinois teachers and school administrators? Currently, the state bears virtually all the cost, leaving the state’s 852 school districts free to negotiate benefits without worrying about the price tag.
When the Illinois General Assembly approved a budget last summer . . . they also agreed to cut back on the state's contribution to the pension systems. But, this move might have unintended consequences.