The importance of teacher quality should be clear but here’s room to debate the effectiveness of teacher certification. Nonetheless, certification is one of the few measures available to those of us who are taxed to pay those teachers.
Here, then, from the 2018 CRDC, are the Virginia public school division percentages of full time teachers not certified.
There are 32 divisions with 0%, i.e., all the teachers are certified. Richmond is the Big Winner with 22.5%, the gold bar. The red are, from the left, the peer cities Newport News (nearly hidden, 0.1%), Norfolk, and Hampton. The blue is the bar for Galax which, at 3.7% is the closest division to the division average, 3.6%.
Next, the Richmond schools:
Richmond’s awful middle schools, pink, dominate the high end here, except for Hill at 17% (4.8 times the division average). The high schools, yellow, are spread out some, ranging from Community (invisible at 0%) to Wythe at 35%. The elementary schools, green, run from 4% to 31%. The blue bar is the Richmond average, 22.5%, which is 6.3 times the division average.
Here is the list.
Except for Community High and six of the specialty schools, all our schools had remarkable shortages of certified teachers. Perhaps that was related to the salaries: The Richmond average for teaching positions in ‘18 was $51,528 against a state average of $57,260. Then, again, these data don’t tell us how much of the salary difference reflected lower salaries paid to all those uncertified teachers.