Recruiting and Retaining Teachers

Photo of a black male teacher helping a teen with seatwork.October 2010
Revised May 2013

Volumes have been written about the challenge of recruiting and retaining highly qualified teachers in general and special education. Shortages of qualified educators have long been a serious concern for school systems, especially in rural areas and in low-performing, high-need schools.

To help you take on the challenges of recruiting and retaining teachers in general and special education, here’s a wealth of resources to explore. We’ve organized our list into several categories, so you can more easily find the type of information you’re looking for. Below, in each category, we start with a brief “opener” resource. Then, if you’re looking for more resources on that topic, we send you to another resource page where you’ll find just that.


Short and Sweet Summaries

Need it fast? Need it short? Okay.

Bullet points–what makes teachers leave or stay? (2 pages).

Additional Summaries

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Guides and How-To’s

Here are practical steps and things to do that can improve the systems we use for teacher recruitment and retention.

Compendium of strategies to reduce teacher turnover

Additional Guides and How-To’s

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What Does the Research Say?

Let the research direct your decisions in teacher recruitment and retention.

A review of the research since 1980.

Additional Research resources

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Organizations to Know

Visit the projects and centers that are working every day on teacher recruitment and retention.

The Personnel Center, otherwise known as the National Center for Special Education Personnel and Related Service Providers

Additional Orgs to Know

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Mentoring New Teachers

It’s all the rage for a reason.

Mentoring New Teachers to Increase Retention: A Look at the Research (4 pages)

Additional Mentoring resources

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Communities of Practice

Is it time to join one? Share your knowledge, reap the wisdom of the larger group?

A brief introduction to CoPs.

Additional resources on CoPs

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