Did you walk away from a career in education?

A teacher at Jardín de Niños plays with kids at the school in Lincoln Heights.
A teacher at Jardín de Niños plays with kids at the school in Lincoln Heights.
Mae Ryan/KPCC

Teachers are regularly in short supply. In the 2016 California legislative session, lawmakers proposed three separate bills to address the shortage. Nationally, at least 17 percent of teachers leave the profession in the first five years, with some districts facing starkly higher rates. Early childhood educators, who are typically paid less and have less room for professional development, are often even harder to recruit and keep. 

So when these teachers leave the field, what do they do instead? We’re looking for stories from educators of every level who have turned to other lines of work – maybe moving to a better paying service job with less responsibility, shutting down a home day care, or some other scenario. We’re hoping to highlight the issue of teacher retention with first-person stories.

We read every response, but nothing is shared without your permission.