Iowa’s “Teacher of the Year” says the state shouldn’t back away from the idea of raising teacher salaries to the national average, as low teacher pay’s contributing to the teacher shortage. She says the tough budget time won’t last forever, so the state needs to be visionary when looking at the teacher shortage. Gail Wortmann, who teaches anatomy and physics at Ottumwa High School, is on a one-year sabbatical as “Teacher of the Year.” As she travels the state, rookie teachers tell her they like the new mentoring program lawmakers initiated last year. She says the new teachers want to feel welcome and find their comfort zone.Wortmann spoke to legislators at the statehouse on Tuesday afternoon.
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