RALEIGH – More teachers left their jobs last year according to the 2012-2013 Annual Report on Teachers Leaving the Profession presented last month to the State Board of Education at its meeting in Raleigh. The report shows school systems had an average teacher turnover rate of 14.33 percent for 2012-13, which is higher than the 2011-12 rate of 12.13 percent.

District turnover rates ranged from a high of 35.09 percent in Northampton County Schools to a low of 7.31 percent in Surry County Schools. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools reported a turnover rate of 15.99 percent, which is the 78th lowest among the state’s 115 school districts.

Of those 1,329 teachers who left Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, 368 remained in education, while the reason 504 left was beyond the district’s control. Eighty-two left due to reasons initiated by the district. 

Here’s how other Lake Norman school districts fared:

• The Mooresville Graded School District reported 40 of its 325 teachers left, putting the turnover rate at 12.31 percent. Of those 40 teachers who left, nine remained in education, while the reason 19 left was beyond the district’s control. Two left due to reasons initiated by the district. The district had the 42nd lowest turnover rate among the state’s 115 school systems.

• Iredell-Statesville Schools reported 169 of its 1,333 teachers left, putting the turnover rate at 12.68 percent. Of those 169 teachers who left, 61 remained in education, while the reason 81 left was beyond the district’s control. Two left due to reasons initiated by the district. The district had the 46th lowest turnover rate among the state’s 115 school systems.

• Lincoln County Schools reported 77 of its 786 teachers left, putting the turnover rate at 9.8 percent. Of those 77 teachers who left, 19 remained in education, while the reason 31 left was beyond the district’s control. Eight left due to reasons initiated by the district. The district had the 11th lowest turnover rate among the state’s 115 school systems.

“The statistics that trouble me are the hundreds of educators who left their jobs in 2012-13 to teach in another state or resigned because they were dissatisfied with teaching or wanted a career change,” State Superintendent June Atkinson said. “ I am concerned that if changes are not made, low pay and a lack of support will push even more educators out of North Carolina classrooms and the teaching profession."

The top reason teachers reported for leaving their districts was to teach in another North Carolina school district or charter school. Retirement was listed as the second most cited reason for leaving the classroom. The third most common reason teachers cited for leaving was family relocation.

A total of 887 teachers reported that they left their districts in 2012-13 because they were dissatisfied with teaching or seeking a career change. This number increased from the 816 teachers who cited the same reason last year.

A total of 455 teachers reported resigning to teach in another state, an increase from 341 in 2011 -12.

The number of teachers who reported leaving their districts to teach in another N.C. school district (2,851), to take a non-teaching position in education (1,447), or to teach in a charter school (145) or private school (143) also increased from last year.