In order to answer the research problem and look for ways to control put the number of graduate teachers high, a number of factors ought to be considered. In general, the issue of programme requirement, capacity or filling the shortages of the critical areas, accreditation and certification as well as approval ought to be factored in (Blase & Blase, 2004).
Firstly, is for the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) to scale up the collaboration between the arts and science faculties, so that any gap or imbalance that may exist is filled. It is a common phenomenon to realize that there are imbalances in either of the faculties’, at times there is more science teachers than there are in the arts area. Thus, Maryland State Department of Education must introduce modules and programmes that will allow for more students to be enrolled in these faculties (Boe& Gilford, 1992).
Secondly, is for the Maryland education department to make the terms of hiring the qualified teachers more flexible in order to attract more qualified graduates.it is sad to record that most people pursue teaching as a temporal profession while they await for greener pastures. Maryland can overcome this notion by putting in place skilful marketing programs, multiple options for those who might wish to pursue this line of career, as well as other incentives (Bry & Schneider, 2002). Incentives may mean building the stock capacity of the number of teachers in Maryland, by ensuring that there are several students in middle and high school, thus it would be easier to cultivate a passion for the same in them. This would bear fruits in the long term since the students will be enlightened to understand teaching as rewarding career option (National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1983).
It would not serve much to recruit teachers or shorten the gap of the critical shortages if the teachers cannot be retained in the profession. Teachers as other human beings are bound to seek for greener pasture or employment opportunities with higher financial returns or better working conditions. Mere words cannot retain a teacher in the profession for long; thus, Maryland ought to offer competitive remuneration and better working conditions to discourage the teachers from leaving the practice (Buckley, Schneider & Yi, 2004).
Therefore in the long run, the teachers stock will be sufficient to meet the growing demand of teachers in Maryland. Conclusively, all these endeavours must be geared towards realizing maximum student benefit and performance. There are techniques and styles of ensuring that the student does not in case of the contrary. In the short run, the government of Maryland Department of Education can certify teachers who come to the profession through alternative routes. This approach would help fill the shortage of teachers all the same (Community Training and Assistance Center, 2004).
In order to realize the intended results and answer the research problem properly, data must be collected through a scientific process or a procedural manner. There must be a proper chronology of events, so that time is saved, and accuracy of the data will be unquestionable (Cohen & Murnane, 1985, p.9). It is imperative to present that, for a conclusive report, the research process must adhere to the rules of a research methodology. The methodology must be delineated in a procedural manner from data collection, data analysis to report finding or conclusion.
Given that this is a blend of qualitative and quantitative research study, where the number of the teachers in Maryland and the quality of the educational levels are investigated, thus structured interviews, questionnaires and secondary sources will be useful (Hammon & Hudson, 1989, p.79). The participants to be interviewed include the Maryland Education officials from the government and the teachers. The government representatives will help with information on the recruitment patterns, retention procedures and any other relevant policy affecting the field of Education in Maryland. The teachers (or aspiring teachers) will offer their level of satisfaction and general welfare in terms of salary and work conditions. The secondary sources or the publications will offer insights on the number of teachers who have left, issues that motivated them to leave etc. It is worth to note that all the participants mentioned here will not be holistically considered for the study but rather a sample (proportion of the whole population to be considered for research) will be taken (Decker, Mayer & Glazerman, 2004).
The most appropriate sampling technique will be stratified sampling technique, whereby a sample or a sub-group is selected to form a study group specimen. This type of technique will ensure that rigour is enhanced whole bias is reduced so that the results will be of high degree of accuracy and believability. The stratified sampling technique ensures that the target sample is subdivided into smaller homogeneous or similar subgroups, and in the end, each of the similar or homogenous subgroup will be represented in the total sample (Dee & Keys, 2004, p. 480).
The participants’ identity will be treated in confidence and thus their identities will not be revealed to the public. This is an ethical issues or a likely challenge that will be corrected by keeping the participants’ identity private and their responses confidential.
Relevant data analysis techniques for both the quantitative and qualitative approach will be employed. Techniques such as the exploratory data analysis technique will be particularly beneficial since it covers both the sets of research (Doherty, 2001, p20). Where variance is noted, ANOVA (analysis of variance will be applied to cover the correct the errors or the variance).
After thorough data analysis from the collected data, it is conclusive that the school under-staffing in Maryland is caused by the shortage of teachers which is attributed to other causes (Elmore & Burney, 1997). For instance, the recent increase in teacher retirement and the upsurge and increase in the number of students who enrol in schools. There are, however, chances that there exists organizational and structural lapses in the Education system in Maryland, which drives teachers out of the profession. The structural defect is the acceptance of teachers from alternative routes to join the teaching career (Haggstrom, Hammond & Grissmer, 1988). Scientific research has not shown that teachers who come from the traditional route are more effective than their counterparts in the high selection route/alternative route. It is worth to present that this institutional or organizational rigidity has contributed the rise in teacher shortage in Maryland (Hanushek, Kain & Rivkin, 2004, p.331).
Secondly, is the pursuance of further reading and studies have driven teachers out of a career. During their advanced studies or career development the teachers are burdened with coursework which burn out their energy and diverts most of their attention from classrooms (Hart, 1994, p.481). Thus, it is important to note that coursework may motivate a teacher to take a sabbatical leave and never return to the classroom due to the burden of handling his/her course work and the school work.
Lastly, is the assessment of teacher effectiveness by the state, through the programmes such as ‘Teacher for America.’ It is such programs which the federal or state department of Education uses to peg the salaries and retention techniques (Ingersoll, 2002). There is a problem here because it is practically impossible to rationalize data from different sources. This is to say that it is impractical to gauge the effectiveness of teachers who entered through different routes; traditional and/or alternative. Therefore, highly effective teachers may feel their worth is not being rewarded especially at their young age, so they opt to seek other rewarding careers. The inability of the education system to ascertain the effectiveness of a teacher early enough so that he or she may be retained draws the teachers out and thus the shortage in the long run (National Academy of Sciences, 1987).
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