A teacher shortage is impacting school districts across Indiana, and now the state is doing more to address the increasing need for educators. 

A study by Indiana State University found nearly 97% of Indiana schools are reporting teacher shortages. It’s a problem that’s been festering for years and has only gotten worse since the pandemic. 

The shortage of teachers, compounded by a substitute shortage, has led to longer hours and increasing burnout among teachers.

Kelly Services – a staffing agency – says that’s led to thousands of teacher vacancies across the state.

“We’ve seen demand and vacancies and openings, above and beyond what we’ve seen in the years prior to COVID,” said Tammy McDonald, senior director of Recruiting and Onboarding at Kelly Services. “Our demand in some of our areas has been up over 20%.”

Pike Township is hosting a job fair on Wednesday in an effort to recruit more substitute teachers. It’s from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Pike Performing Arts Center.

Governor Eric Holcomb is also making teacher shortages a priority in this 2022 agenda.

He announced that his office and the Indiana Department of Education are working to build a new teacher supply-and-demand marketplace that will track vacancies, match teachers with open positions and help recruit more teachers to the profession. 

The state is also looking to recruit more educators for Indiana’s highest-need subject areas, such as special education.

They’ve launched a new initiative called ‘I-SEAL’ to provide financial support to help attract more teachers.