Legislators Present A Bill To Assist Mississippi's Current Teacher Shortage For Retired Educators

Miss PINE BELT (WDAM) – The acute need for teachers is a shortfall that never seems to go away.

Retired from teaching, Dr. Teresa Poole is currently the dean of William Carey University’s school of education.

“To retain teachers, we need to provide as much support as we can,” stated Poole.

She acknowledged the difficulties in keeping educators in the classroom, but she was confident that soon there will be some improvement.

According to Poole, “we are working every day to recruit and retain teachers.” “This is like an investment in teachers because I know how much work and time they put in.”

According to data from the Mississippi Department of Education, the state’s teacher shortage increased by 7% from the 2022–2023 academic year.

That comes to almost 2,800 open posts.

To help with the shortage, Mississippi lawmakers have established the Retired Teacher Return to Work Taskforce, which will permit retirees to return to the workforce.

Rep. Donnie Scoggin of Mississippi stated, “This will allow them to stay in the classroom, which is a great thing because we need the teachers in the classroom.”

According to Scoggin, there are still some issues with the law that need to be resolved.

Will the educators be permitted to take withdrawals from the Public Employee Retirement System or must they still make contributions?

According to Scoggin, “I would hope that the teachers would continue to make at least half, if not three-fourths, or even all of regular pay.” “The primary concern is ensuring their ability to contribute to PERS in order to maintain it at least somewhat sustainable.”

Legislators have, nevertheless, given educators additional choices.

According to Scoggin, “there are a number of additional bills, grants, and scholarships that will help either support a teacher if they go back to school, to become a teacher, or to encourage them to go into teaching in a rural area.”

This legislative session, a number of proposals are being considered to help both hire more teachers and provide funding for existing teachers to carry out their duties.

By Caleb Anderson

Caleb, a seasoned journalist with a passion for storytelling, has dedicated his career to bringing the latest news to the public. With a keen eye for detail and a commitment to unbiased reporting, He navigates the dynamic world of journalism, covering a wide range of topics from local events to global issues. Caleb's insightful articles reflect his dedication to keeping readers informed and engaged in the ever-evolving landscape of news.

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