BISMARCK, ND – Poll results released today by North Dakota United, the state’s foremost association of public educators and employees, indicate more educators see teacher retention as a bigger threat to the profession than in the previous two polls NDU has conducted since January 2022. Results also clarified what the best solutions to the issue are, according to teachers: policymakers should implement higher wages, and district administrators and elected officials should offer more direct and tangible support to the state’s education professionals.
“ND United has for the past two years presented poll results indicating that the teacher shortage in North Dakota is real and teachers’ perceptions as to why that is so. Poll after poll shows that teachers do not feel respected in their work and valued for their professionalism. This most recent poll should provide policymakers with timely and relevant information to guide sound policy to mitigate the teacher shortage and to strengthen North Dakota’s efforts to recruit and retain the very best teachers to do the vital work of educating our future.”
The poll, conducted by DFM Research, asked North Dakota educators how they’re feeling about their jobs. The results show previous band-aid policies haven’t solved the problem:
- 88% believe teacher retention for the 2023-24 school year is a major issue.
- When hired, 93% of respondents saw a future where they would retire as an educator; when asked now, that number declined by more than half, to just 40 percent.
- 19% of educators under age 30 and 24% between ages 30 and 39 say they plan to retire in the education field. This decline is in stark contrast to the same young respondents who said when they entered the profession, they planned to retire in the profession (85 and 94% respectively).
The poll was conducted by DFM Research, between November 7-14, via an online platform where NDU and the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction contacted educators via email and text. In total, 1,098 North Dakota educators completed the survey; results are weighted by gender, age, region and building type to ensure results are reflective of the North Dakota education community. The margin of error is plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.