It seems South Carolina lawmakers are taking the potential of a teacher shortfall seriously.
The Associated Press reported a newly created Senate Committee on Public School Teachers took testimony Tuesday on how the state can encourage more students to become public school teachers, keep good teachers in the classroom and more quickly remove incompetent teachers. In May, The Post and Courier reported Education Oversight Committee Executive Director Melanie Barton worried the percentage of teachers hired had dropped and the number of teachers retiring was starting to increase.
South Carolina's colleges graduate about 2,000 education majors yearly - enough to fill half of the 4,000 anŽnual openings. Districts have been forced to search for teachers outside of South Carolina in the past, but it costs money to recruit them.
Teacher pay doesn't help either. Pay varies by district. In 2012-13, average salaries ranged from $39,800 in Allendale County to $52,400 in Horry County.
"If we're not careful, we can have a problem," said Barton in May. "The pipeline for new hires might not be enough."
The Post and Courier has launched a special report on domestic violence: "Till Death Do Us Part."
More than 300 women have been killed by men in the past decade in South Carolina, dying at a rate of one every 12 days while the state does little to stem the carnage from domestic abuse. The Palmetto State maintains a legal system in which a man can earn five years in prison for abusing his dog but a maximum of just 30 days in jail for beating his wife or girlfriend on a first offense.
Huge data breach affects South Carolina hospitals (The Post and Courier)
U.S. Marshals arrest third person in connection with Memorial Day weekend shooting at Fountainbleau Inn (The Sun News)
SC rush for guns and ammo has slowed, dealers say (The Greenville News)
Midlands law agencies enthusiastically defend getting surplus military equipment (The State)