The Delaware Department of Education launched a new survey to learn more from educators changing positions and help stakeholders better understand educator workforce patterns across the state.

Understanding why educators change roles or leave their positions will help local leaders to target approaches to improve recruitment and retention efforts in their districts or schools. The Delaware Department of Education will use statewide data to identify and implement new strategies to attract and retain teachers, school leaders and other educators across the state.

“We want all Delaware students to have well-prepared and effective educators supporting their learning every day,” said Secretary of Education Susan Bunting. “Understanding why educators choose to change positions or schools will help us to better support educators and both keep them in or attract them to the areas in which we need them the most.”

The state could target efforts to attract and retain teachers in specific subject areas such as math, science and world language; in certain stages of their career; or in certain geographic areas. This could lead to greater sustainment of Delaware’s educator workforce. Delaware’s Mid-Atlantic location, with proximity to several states, makes it important to understand why educators may leave the state and what could encourage them to stay.

In addition to the department analyzing the statewide data, local school districts and charter schools will be provided local data, which will aid them in developing local strategies to address recruitment and retention challenges.

“Our district appreciates the work and collaboration that the department put into funding and developing the statewide Educator Mobility Survey,” said Laurel School District Director of Finance and Human Resources Monet Whaley Smith. “The data that both the department and districts and charter schools will have access to as a result of these survey responses will be significant in making necessary and meaningful improvements to our recruitment and retention practices. With the increasing shortage of certified teachers across our state, retaining our most impactful educators is of critical importance. This survey will help take the guesswork out of determining why teachers leave schools, districts and Delaware and what we can do about it.”

The department plans to release a report in early 2020 based on the survey results.

Educators with questions about the survey should contact educator.mobility@doe.k12.de.us.