Cincinnati State helps efforts to end the teacher shortage in Ohio

Kelly Hubbard, Program Chair for Cincinnati State’s Early Childhood Education (ECE) associate’s degree, spoke at a regional meeting held October 28, 2022, to “celebrate teaching and identify collaborative solutions to address the teacher shortage in Ohio.”

The event hosted at Miami University was one of five regional gatherings sponsored by the Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Higher Education. The statewide meetings were attended by stakeholders from pre-school, K-12, and higher education institutions, as well as representatives of business, government, and community supporters of education throughout the state.

Other gatherings took place in late October and early November at the University of Akron, Bowling Green State University, Ohio State, and Ohio University.

The Cincinnati Enquirer quoted Kelly saying “We have to stop talking about [possible solutions] and we have to take action.”

Kelly said the purpose of the regional meetings was to bring greater public awareness to the implications of the teacher shortage, generate support for regional and state-level investments to end the shortage, and explore ways to expand and diversify the educator pipeline.

“In the spirit of ‘taking action’, and with help from our College Credit Plus Coordinator Sue Kowalski, we have developed a pathway for CCP high school students to transition into Cincinnati State’s ECE program,” Kelly said.

“Also, we have started conversations with Miami University for a 2-plus-2 articulation agreement that will provide a pathway for Cincinnati State ECE graduates into Miami’s Primary Education (Pre K-5) Bachelor of Science program,” Kelly added.

“In addition, about a third of our ECE graduates are taking advantage of the ‘Be the Change’ opportunity and moving on to Mount St. Joseph University to pursue a teaching degree,” Kelly said.

According to the Enquirer article, in addition to solutions that involve partnerships like those Kelly described, other possible solutions that were discussed included:

  • Start recruiting future teachers early in their high school careers and provide financial assistance to students who want to become teachers.
  • Waive tuition for students’ semester of student teaching, and pay them for student teaching.
  • Lower teacher license renewal fees.
  • Consider more flexible school schedules.
  • Provide mental health support for teachers.
  • Build inclusive, supportive school cultures and lift up new teachers during their first three years on the job.
  • Revamp the state’s certification testing system and reduce the cost of certification testing.

Other media coverage of the regional meeting appeared in the Middletown Journal-News, the Springfield News-Sun, the Dayton Daily News, and WOSU public radio.