Chapter 5
Elementary and Secondary Teachers
Between 1999 and 2011, the number of teachers in elementary and
secondary schools is projected to rise. The increase is related
to the levels of enrollments and education revenue receipts from
state sources per capita. Increases are expected in the numbers
of both elementary and secondary teachers. The number of secondary
teachers will increase at a faster rate than the number of elementary
teachers. The numbers of both public and private teachers are projected
to grow. The projections do not take into account increases in the
number of teachers due to the effects of initiatives to reduce class
sizes.
Three alternative projections of the numbers of elementary and
secondary teachers were developed to indicate a range of possible
outcomes. These alternatives are based on varying economic assumptions
about the growth path for one of the key variables in the public
school teacher modelseducation revenue receipts from state sources
per capita. Under the middle alternative, education revenue receipts
from state sources per capita is projected to increase by 14 percent
between 1999 and 2011. The low alternative assumes that education
revenue receipts from state sources per capita will increase by
11 percent over the projection period. The high alternative assumes
that education revenue receipts from state sources per capita
will increase by 16 percent during this period. The other variables
in the teacher model are elementary enrollment and secondary enrollment
in public schools. Between 1999 and 2011, secondary enrollment
is projected to increase by 5 percent, while elementary will decrease
around 2 percent (table 2). The
enrollment variables are the same for all three alternatives.
Elementary and Secondary
School Teachers
The number of teachers in elementary and secondary schools increased
from 2.59 million in 1986 to 3.30 million in 1999, an increase
of 27 percent (table 31 and figure
45). Under the middle alternative, the number of teachers
is projected to increase to 3.65 million by the year 2011, a 10percent
increase over the projection period. Under the low alternative,
the number of teachers is projected to increase to 3.61 million
by the year 2011. Under the high alternative, classroom teachers
are projected to increase to 3.68 million by the year 2011.
The number of elementary teachers increased from 1.52 million
in 1986 to 2.03 million in 1999, an increase of 33 percent (figure
47). Under the middle alternative, the number of elementary
teachers is projected to increase to 2.25 million by 2011, an
increase of 11 percent from 1999. Under the low alternative, the
number of elementary teachers is projected to increase to 2.22
million by the year 2011. Under the high alternative, elementary
teachers are projected to increase to 2.27 million by the year
2011.
The number of secondary teachers increased from 1.07 million
in 1986 to 1.28 million in 1999, an increase of 19 percent. Under
the middle alternative, the number of secondary teachers is projected
to increase to 1.40 million by the year 2011, resulting in an
increase of 10 percent. Under the low alternative, the number
of secondary teachers is projected to increase to 1.39 million
by the year 2011. Under the high alternative, secondary teachers
are projected to increase to 1.41 million by the year 2011.
Elementary and Secondary
Teachers, by Control of School
The number of teachers in public elementary and secondary schools
increased from 2.24 million in 1986 to 2.91 million in 1999, an
increase of 30 percent (table 31
and figure 49). Under the middle
alternative, the number of teachers is projected to increase to
3.21 million by the year 2011, a 10percent increase over the
projection period. Under the low alternative, the number of classroom
teachers is projected to increase to 3.17 million by the year
2011. Under the high alternative, classroom teachers are projected
to increase to 3.23 million by the year 2011. Projections of elementary
and secondary teachers in public schools that have been produced
over the past 12 years are less accurate than projections of public
elementary and secondary enrollment that NCES has published over
the same period. For more information, see table
A2.
The number of elementary and secondary teachers in private schools
was an estimated 397,000 in 1999. Under the middle alternative,
this number is projected to increase to 443,000 by the year 2011,
an increase of 12 percent from 1999. Under the low alternative,
the number of private school teachers is projected to increase
to 438,000 by the year 2011. Under the high alternative, private
school teachers are projected to increase to 447,000 by the year
2011.
Pupil/Teacher Ratios
A broad relationship between the number of pupils and teachers
can be described by the pupil/teacher ratio. The pupil/teacher
ratios presented in table 32
were computed based on elementary and secondary enrollment and
the number of classroom teachers by control of institution.
The pupil/teacher ratio in elementary and secondary schools
decreased from 17.4 in 1986 to 16.7 in 1989. It increased to 17.1
in 1992 followed by a decline to 16.0 in 1999 (table
32 and figure 51). Under
the middle alternative, this ratio is projected to decline to
14.5 by the year 2011. Based on the low and high alternatives,
the pupil/teacher ratio in elementary and secondary schools is
expected to range between 14.4 and 14.7 in the year 2011.
Although private elementary and secondary teachers represented
12 percent of total elementary and secondary teachers in 1999,
private school enrollment was 11 percent of total enrollment.
This indicates that private schools have more teachers for a given
number of students on average than do public schools; that is,
private school pupil/teacher ratios are smaller than public school
pupil/teacher ratios.
The pupil/teacher ratio in public elementary and secondary schools
decreased from 17.7 in 1986 to 17.2 in 1990. It increased to 17.4
in 1993 and decreased to 16.1 in 1999 (figure
52). Under the middle alternative, the pupil/teacher ratio
is projected to decrease to 14.7 in 2011. Based on the low and
high alternatives, the pupil/teacher ratio in public elementary
and secondary schools is projected to range between 14.6 and 14.9
in the year 2011.
For private elementary and secondary schools, the pupil/teacher
ratio decreased from 15.7 in 1986 to 13.8 in 1989. Then it increased
to 15.2 in 1999. Under the middle alternative, the pupil/teacher
ratio is projected to decrease to 13.2 in 2011. Based on the low
and high alternatives, the pupil/teacher ratio in private elementary
and secondary schools is expected to range between 13.1 and 13.4
in the year 2011.
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