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Last week, the N.C. Department of Instruction released a report to the General Assembly on the turnover rates of North Carolina’s teachers.
The report, marked as a draft and available below, showed that, overall, teacher turnover rates were more than 14 percent across the state.
That’s a five-year high statewide. And the same is true among the 17 westernmost counties in the state. (Watauga County is in the department’s northwest region.)
For the 2012-2013 school year, 828 teachers left teaching in the 18 counties of Western North Carolina, according to the report.
The highest turnover rates for the year were found in Jackson County, which had a rate of more than 17 percent. It was followed by Yancey County (at 13.97 percent), Henderson County (at 13.49 percent) and Asheville City Schools (at 13.19 percent). The lowest turnover rate across the region was found in Transylvania (7.46 percent) and Clay (9 percent) counties.
But while the turnover rate in Western North Carolina reached a recent high, it was the second-lowest among the state’s eight regions, according to the report. The highest 5-year turnover rate was found in the Sandhills/South Central area of the state. And the highest rate overall for the year was found in Northampton County, where the teacher turnover rate was more than 35 percent.
The report also detailed findings on why teachers were either leaving the profession or changing school districts — all of which contribute to the turnover rate.
In Jackson County, more than 37 percent listed that the turnover was for “reasons beyond their control” — which includes teachers who retired with full benefits, individuals who resigned for health reasons, those who resigned due to family responsibilities and/or childcare, death and those who resigned due to family relocation. In both Henderson and Yancey counties, turnover was attributed most to leaving the district but staying in education. At Asheville City Schools, the largest reason cited for turnover was also for reasons beyond their control.
For more, read the full report, which can be found in full below.