Recruiting Mathematics Teachers: Strategies to Consider

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  • 1 University of Missouri—Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211

The federal No Child Left Behind Act (Public Law 107-110, HR 1, 2001) calls for all teachers in schools receiving federal funds to be “highly qualified.” That is, they must hold a bachelor's degree, demonstrate competence in the subject matter that they teach, and have full state teacher certification—their certification requirements cannot be waived nor can they have an “emergency, provisional, or temporary” certificate. These requirements are mandatory by the 2005–2006 school year. However, a serious shortage of mathematics teachers continues to exist in middle and secondary schools. For example, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education reported that during the past fifteen years, an average of fewer than 200 mathematics teaching certificates (middle school and secondary) were issued annually by thirty-four different colleges and universities in the state. This average is far short of the more than 400 job listings that Missouri school districts annually post for middle school and secondary mathematics teachers.


Barbara is director of the Show-Me Project, a National Center for the Implementation and Dissemination of Middle School Mathematics Curricula. Her research interests include calculators and number sense.

Bob's research interests include number sense and doctoral programs in mathematics education.

The Mathematics Teacher


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