RNE News

The Saber

RNE News

The Saber

RNE News

The Saber

RNE’s teacher shortage

How it impacts the upcoming school year

The Saber has counted approximately 24 teachers who will no longer be at RNE for the 2024-2025 school year. According to RNE’s online staff directory, the school currently employs 123 teachers. That means 19.5% of the current teaching staff will not be returning. Those numbers don’t include administrators, substitutes, teacher aides, or other support staff. The state average is 14.3%, found by comparing the total number of teacher positions and teacher departures for the 2023-2024 school year. 

The issue is clear, and it’s happening on a national scale. There were a reported 7,353 teacher departures in South Carolina for the 2023-2024 school year. In the 2013-2014 school year, that number was 5,277. In the ten years between, teacher departures increased by roughly 39%.

The Saber submitted an open records request to the district when investigating, and received reports of teacher departures for the past 5 school years. While most of the data used above has been independently verified, some discrepancies were found with the documents received. Several departed teachers weren’t on the list, and some teachers who hadn’t left were included. It is possible that a teacher would be included if they were only experiencing a position change, but this has not yet been verified. 

Teacher retention has been a national struggle for years now, due to a number of factors. 

Graciela Paulino, a visual arts teacher at RNE, will no longer be teaching next year, and will instead be working with coding and web design.

Visual Arts teacher Graciela Paulino. Paulino taught at RNE for two years, but will not be returning for the 2024-2025 school year. (Caroline Brandes)

“It’s not just RNE. It’s not just this district, or the state. It’s everywhere.” Paulinho explained.          

Paulino thinks there are several ways to help the problem.                                                                  

“It won’t change unless we see changes in the schools, especially with teacher pay, and teacher expectations… If you want to retain the teachers, you have to make sure you treat them with respect, and pay them for what they do.”  

The Saber is currently investigating the issues, especially with how it relates to RNE. In the coming months, we’ll be publishing a deep dive into the teacher shortage and the lack of teacher retention. 

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About the Contributors
Caroline Brandes
Caroline Brandes, Editor-in-Chief
Caroline Brandes is a current sophomore at Richland Northeast High School, where she is involved in Convergence Media Program and the school's Mock Trial team. She acts as Editor-in-Chief of The Saber online publication, along with her co-editor Alyssa Amaker. In her free time, she does Girl Scouts, and enjoys cooking, reading, and writing. After graduation, she hopes to attend college, and possibly study law.
Alyssa Amaker
Alyssa Amaker, Editor-in-Chief
She’s a senior in the IB Diploma program, a student journalist for the Saber online newspaper, and an active part of many clubs around campus including Senior House, Book Club, Gear-Up, and more. After high school, she plans on double majoring in education and English with a minor in French to pursue her passion for teaching modern literature. Outside of school she enjoys reading, writing, and listening to music. If you see her in the hallway, there’s a 99.9% chance that she has her headphones on and a book in hand.

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