Building Interests in a Career in Teaching Among Latina/o Students at a Charter School

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Teacher shortage crisis were consistent across the nation. Higher education institutions, K-12 school districts, and political leaders were actively seeking solutions to ensure classrooms did not sit vacant and were

Teacher shortage crisis were consistent across the nation. Higher education institutions, K-12 school districts, and political leaders were actively seeking solutions to ensure classrooms did not sit vacant and were not staffed by individuals who are unqualified to teach. This mixed methods action research study examined one strategy for teacher recruitment by targeting high school students who attended a Title 1 school. Due to the growing Hispanic population in Arizona, coupled with the underrepresentation of Hispanic teachers compared to the number of Hispanic students, a particular focus was devoted to targeting Hispanic high school students as they represented a potential untapped pipeline of future educators. The study was conducted to explore factors that might increase student interest in declaring education as a major upon graduating from high school and eventually pursuing teaching as a career. Three theoretical frameworks guided the study: (a) Theory of Planned Behavior, (b) Self-Efficacy, and (c) Social Cognitive Career Theory. A total of 20 participants engaged in the intervention over the course of three weeks. The intervention included engagement in curriculum exposing students to the teaching profession as well as clinical experiences. Data gathered included pre- and post- intervention survey results and semi-structured interview questions. It was anticipated the intervention would increase students’ interest in becoming a teacher. Results demonstrated a decrease in intention post-intervention. Future research should examine alternative recruitment approaches for students who do not already have an interest in pursuing the profession.