Attrition creates ripple effects across an entire organization – not only impacting students and families and pulling employees away from important functions – but it also has a significant financial impact on districts themselves. According to the Learning Policy Institute (LPI), “research shows that urban districts can, on average, spend more than $20,000 on each new teacher hire, including school and district expenses related to separation, recruitment, hiring, and training.” The costs may be similar for roles that require very targeted training, like bus drivers. And, these investments don’t pay their full dividend when staff leave within 1 or 2 years after being hired.
This calculator was designed by LPI to estimate the cost of teacher turnover and inform conversations about how and why to address retention. Start by answering two principal questions - how many teachers left last year across the district, and how would you describe your region (urban, suburban, or rural). For example, in late August, one urban Virginia district had 394 openings; these openings alone will likely cost the district $4,334,000 in direct costs - not to mention the impact on student success.