Some American public schools are turning to foreign teachers because Americans with college educations are increasingly uninterested in low-paid, demanding teaching jobs. Many teachers, struggling for a toehold in the shrinking middle class, have switched careers. And fewer college students are choosing to become teachers. The need for mathematics, science, and special education teachers is especially dire in poor and rural schools throughout the country.
“Teaching has become a much less attractive profession,” said Linda Darling-Hammond, president of the Learning Policy Institute, an education policy thinktank, noting that American teacher salaries have fallen far behind those of other college educated workers.
Joe Thomas, president of the Arizona Education Association, a teachers’ union, said uncompetitive teachers’ salaries have forced school administrators to look for “creative ways” to fill teacher vacancies – such as recruiting from abroad.