According to the most recent data available from the Indiana Department of Education, the state issued licenses to about 4,500 teachers during the 2013-14 school year. In 2010, that number was 5,500.
Teachers also need separate licenses to teach individual subjects, so the number of total licenses teachers are receiving has dropped more dramatically. The state granted more than 6,000 licenses to first-time teachers in 2013, as opposed to about 16,000 four years earlier.
This doesn’t surprise Gerardo Gonzalez, outgoing dean at Indiana University’s School of Education, who says he thinks the state is headed for a teaching crisis.
"We’ve always had shortages in some fields, like math, science, special education, English as a second language – but now we’re beginning to see shortages across the board," Gonzalez says.
Gonzalez attributes the decline to low pay, a social stigma surrounding the teaching profession, and specifically in Indiana, newly enacted policies that make teaching a less appealing career path such as tying teacher evaluations to student test scores.