Desoto County NewsMississippi News

Teacher shortage grows in Mississippi, DCS to hold Teacher Career Fair

The shortage of school teachers in Mississippi is growing with North and Northeast Mississippi the area where the shortage has hit the most.  

The Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) released its 2023-2024 Educator Shortage survey results late last week. The survey report indicates that 5,012 vacancies among teachers, administrators and support staff exist in Mississippi, up 24 from a year ago.  

The voluntary survey was conducted with school districts across the state from August to November. MDE said all districts participated in the survey.  Individual school district statistics were not part of the survey results.  

Compared to last year, vacancies increased by 182 among teachers, by nine among K-12 licensed educators (library/media, counselors and speech language positions), and by 25 among administrators (principals and assistant principals). 

Vacancies decreased by 192 among K-12 support staff such as teacher assistants, nurses, custodians, bus drivers, food service staff and administrative assistants.

The MDE report said teacher vacancy decreases were noted in Congressional Districts one and four in the northeast and southeast parts of the state. Vacancies increased the most in Congressional District two in the northwest and central regions.

Four areas the state education department has spotlighted during the next year are the following:

  • Convene an Educator Workforce Advisory group comprised of Mississippi universities and districts to address current and projected needs.​
  • Increase awareness of new elementary education pathways and endorsement options.
  • Ask the Legislature for support to continue the Mississippi Teacher Residency in geographical critical shortage areas.
  • Launch the Professional Growth System Observation and Development Portal in Mississippi Educator Career Continuum Archive (MECCA) and the Empowering Educators Workshop.

In DeSoto County, the school district annually holds a Teacher Career Fair to address vacancies and attract new teachers for the upcoming school year. This year’s Career Fair will be held on Tuesday, Feb. 27, from 2-4 p.m. at the Landers Center in Southaven.  

Registration is currently being accepted from teacher candidates through the DCS website. Administrators from schools in all eight attendance centers will be on hand to talk with teacher candidates who attend the come-and-go event.  

2024 Teacher Career Fair