STEM Educators Report Shortage of STEM Faculty in Their Schools
New findings released today indicate a shortage of STEM faculty in high schools and middle schools.
The findings were part of a survey of STEM educators conducted by Samsung as part of its Solve for Tomorrow program. More than 400 educators involved in STEM were polled for the survey, 94% of which had primary responsibility for teaching STEM.
Among those, 65% said that their school "is experiencing a shortage of STEM faculty, with 13% indicating that it’s a severe issue," according to the report, titled The State of STEM Education. "Probing the challenges of teaching STEM classes today versus other subjects, the majority of respondents (59%) reported that, 'STEM education is challenging — but it also offers unique rewards in terms of encouraging student curiosity and motivation.' At the same time, fewer than 8% felt that remote learning took a heavier toll on STEM education than on other disciplines."
“Through our work on Solve for Tomorrow, Samsung has seen just how critical STEM Teachers are to ensuring the future of STEM education — and a vibrant STEM workforce,” said Ann Woo, director of corporate citizenship for Samsung North America, in a prepared statement. “Society at large needs to listen to and understand the concerns of these dedicated educators: Innovation and progress depend on the fruits of their hard work. We hope the insights from The State of STEM Education will contribute to making sure our communities continue to provide what STEM educators need to thrive."
Other findings from the survey included:
65% of respondents indicated that their local school boards and communities generally support STEM or that "the success of the STEM program has been a 'solid positive' with the community.
44% indicated that project-based learning "has been broadly effective in engaging their classes and sparking interest in STEM careers."
44% said "PBL is a great equalizer, helping students who have had a hard time in STEM classes 'get it,' while also letting STEM naturals stretch their wings."
74% said STEM education offers a "valuable contribution to our education mission."
53% said STEM is a "doorway to tomorrow's opportunity for a diverse student cadre."
60% indicated they feel respected by students.
60% also said they feel "energized by students' enthusiasm for STEM."
41% said they are underpaid.
26% of respondents said they feel "burned out."
Further details about Solve for Tomorrow can be found at samsung.com.
About the Author
David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 29-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.
He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEDavidNagel (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).