Teachers for Teaching: The Role of Math and Science Teachers in the Effort to Recruit More Math and Science Teachers
Author: Diana Campbell

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5. Conclusions

Insofar as there are teachers willing to be champions of their career, the evidence examined supports the claim that teachers are an under utilized resources in the effort to enhance the math and science teacher workforce. Unfortunately, there does not to seem to be any dialog in schools or districts  about why, when or how teachers might contribute to this effort.  

This exploratory study surfaced teachers' reflections on their career and career path. The notion of the teaching career as a "calling" is worthy of further exploration. How does this belief influence a teacher's proclivity to promote his or her career? Another issue that deserves more attention is the efficacy of encouragement. How many teachers have become teachers in spite of discouragement? How many teachers have become teachers without encouragement from great math and science teachers. A recent study conducted on behalf of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, entitled Teaching as a Second Career, brings the significance of this issue to light. The study examined 24-60 year olds with at least a bachelor's degree to determine if they would consider becoming a teacher in the future. Fully 42% of respondents said they would consider becoming a teacher while 43% said they have considered it in the past.

Public schools, as democratic institutions, respond to national imperatives. The military recruits aggressively in many schools. Text books and curriculum reflect critical social issues like multiculturalism and environmental awareness. In this vein, we contend that schools are natural place to champion the math and science teaching career - in particular because nearly every future math and science teacher will pass through schools. Therefore, in conclusion, we offer yet one more recommendation:  school district leaders, education funders, education policy leaders create incentives and platforms for math and science teachers to systematically, routinely and collaboratively take-on the issue of how to attract future generations of math and science teachers.