November 14, 2023 – Collinsville CUSD 10 Superintendent Dr. Mark B. Skertich and Collinsville High School social studies teacher Dakota Tostado were among the panelists invited by Advance Illinois to discuss “The State of Our Educator Pipeline” during an event hosted at the Gateway Center in Collinsville.
Advance Illinois is a Chicago-based “… independent policy and advocacy organization working towards a healthy public education system that prepares students to achieve success in college, career, and civic life.” The November 14 panel members were invited by Advance Illinois to discuss how teacher supply is impacting schools in southwestern Illinois communities.
The panel participants were:
- Robin Steans, President, Advance Illinois
- Dr. Jill Griffin, Superintendent, Bethalto CUSD 8
- Dr. Nate Williams, Associate Professor of Education, SIUE
- Dr. Mark B. Skertich, Superintendent, Collinsville CUSD 10
- Dakota Tostado, Teacher, Collinsville High School, Collinsville CUSD 10
Dr. Skertich and Dr. Williams are members of the Advance Illinois Advisory Group.
Steans opened the presentation by summarizing her organization’s recent report “The State of Our Educator Pipeline 2023: Strengths, Opportunities, and the Early Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic.” She highlighted specific data points and trends in the supply, recruitment and retention of both certified teachers and paraprofessional staff.
During the discussion, superintendents Dr. Skertich and Dr. Griffin talked about challenges their district’s face and what they are doing to address those challenges. Dr. Williams provided insight about teacher preparation programs, and how they are evolving to support teachers and meet the needs of today’s schools. Tostado, a second-year teacher, recounted his experiences as a student of color and how that impacted his decision to become an educator.