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tv   KQED Newsroom  PBS  January 29, 2022 1:00am-1:30am PST

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tonight on kqed newsroom. a crisis is unfolding in the classroom. teachers experience burnout and are considering leaving the profession in record numbers. we speak with this gas guest with teach for america. hundreds of acres of land turns to america. nancy pelosi will seek another term in office. this week's big stories in california.
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plus, iguanas, turtles and boa constrictors. this week look at something beautiful takes us inside the reptilian mecca that is in the east bay of liberia. this friday, january 28, 2022. hello and welcome to the show. this is kqed newsroom. i am priya david clemens. we start the show with education. the pandemic has had incredible pressure on our school systems and teachers in particular. they are experiencing significant stress and burnout. twice as many teachers experience stress than other professions and three times more likely to suffer from symptoms of depression. >> i'm feeling burned out. every teacher i work with and every teacher i know is experiencing some level of burnout right now.
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>> we are all in a boat and some of us have paddles and some don't and we have blisters and we are rowing and we are in it together. i still el that. but it feels like the water has gotten a whole lot serious. >> i'm exhausted. burnt out, yes. trying to make it through each day. yes. trying to stay awake long enough to make dinner and be you somewhat present to my own children. every day is a battle. i get emotional and ready to cry. and i love what i do. >> many california schools are already struggling with staffing shortages. study at your study find teachers are contemplating quitting and record numbers. ining me now with in-depth perspective on teacher burnout is teach for america bay area direct there. thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having me.
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i appreciate being part of this conversation. >> your job is to recruit and train new teachers. how is that going? >> teacfor america is an organization that enlists leaders to consider joining the call to become an educator and serving low-income schools. what i would say there are individuals that are passionate about our mission who are saying yes to this opportunity. and it is getting harder and harder year after year to recruit teachers. if it's true for teach for america, is true for the state of california. we've seen a teacher shortage that's become tougher and tougher for the last decade. when people think about teaching in the context of ongoing pandemic that seems to recede and come back, the call is much harder to say yes. we are hearing and seeing anecdotally,'s studies with higher levels of stress and burnout. when young leaders decide if
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this is a path they want to take , they are thinking about their opportunities in front of them. >> tough getting people into teaching. other people is retention. let's look at one teacher has to say about how he feels staying in the job. >> i think about quitting a lot. walk down the hallway and think if i could quit i would. the bigger problem is as a veteran teacher, i need to hang on until i can retire. if the younger ones, younger teachers just coming up that we need, they are going to be quitting. they been teaching one or two years and they didn't sign up to invent school online. right now it's so overwhelming. they are smart, they can do something else. why go into an overwhelming job where you are stressed and losing sleep every night just
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for that. maybe you can do something in tech and get more pay. >> a job people do because they love teaching and education. they want to train up the next generation. are you seeing that turn that he is talking about with teachers leaving jobs? >> absolutely. a part of it is happening now. part of it is a window into what is coming this fall. to give you context. i started in education as a teacher. i taught middle school. my mom taught for 30 years and both my sisters teach. it's a family job. a family passion. we love our children and work. i get a window into the reality of a teaching job right now through my family but also through the hundds of teachers
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that teach for us across the various communities. everything that teacher shared resonates on so many levels. i've seen educators that made the decision to make it a lifelong career. they never thought about crew quitting because they don't know what to expect from one day to the next. i don't know if i will get into classes. i don't know if i can be a culture teacher. i might cover for teachers that are calling in sick because of covid. there is a substitute shortage. there is not enough talent. there is a need right w in our schools. hearing the teachers say the concern about young teachers, that's real. teachers learning the path and it's already hard. teaching is a passion. thinking about addressing learning loss. questions that families might have right now on top of the pandemic, have become that much harder. when you have teachers learning the craft altogether and
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holding a broader scope and responsibility from the pandemic, teachers are learning. for our young people who don't have many opportunities in front of them. of the great resignation or great renegotiation. they are thinking about their mental health and overall wellness. they are thinking about flexibility and so many other pathways a fulfill a calling or emission and take better care of themselves. this is something we are thinking about and concerned about. a recent survey showed 48 percent over the last 38 days have considered quitting. if we learned anything during the pandemic, schools are critical to a functioning society. when schools shut down it impacts family units. it impacts people engaging in the workforce and putting food
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on the table. if we were to think about teachers quitting now and not be here tomorrow, what would that mean for our society? that's a level of concern for all the community. legislators are holding. not just recruit but retain the current workforce that we have right now. >> what do you see coming down the road. if this school year ends and the next one begins are you expect thing mass ridge name resignations? >> yes, we will see folks resign unless they see schools stepping up in a different way to resource our schools and help them meet the demands they are holding right now. i think we will see more shortages. again, california has been experiencing ongoing teacher shortage. that felt more acutely in our schools for low income kids and
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students of color. at this moment, given the demands of the job in the narrative, what we think about with vacancies and opening up a school year with hundreds of vacancies, is going to be about students of color. this is a concern. for me who's someone who works with educators, what are we doing to advocate for solutions? not just now but what we will need. in the fall we have quality teachers in the schools to take care of our children the most valule asset of our society. >> schools have become de facto day cares, food pantries, mental health crisis units. we have an interview from a teacher that we spoke with.
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let's listen to that. >> schools don't happen in a vacuum. a lot of resources that are schools. when students are coming in hungry from home and a parent has to work many jobs and it isn't there all the time, you see the parent is showing their love to a kid by getting food on the table and working jobs. our whole society is set up to support families. that comes to schools when students show up with their needs. so many needs. we can't support all those different needs in the building. >> teachers are being asked to do much more than teach. what if you felt about the burden of that teachers are asked to carry? >> one thing that makes the teachers profession rewarding is a relationship you build with students and their families. in some ways, it makes sense that families are coming with more questions and needs because of the relationship they have. it's true that over the course
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of the pandemic, schools are providing more mental health services. there is a demand. and feeding students and families. also we have families experiencing addiction. loss of housing because they lost their employment and no income coming into their household. all those issues were xacerbated. our schools, even the demand and scope of this are not equipped right now they can't support teachers taking that and direct families. >> let's listen to this and come back to. we asked teachers what help and support they want and need. let's listen to them and hear your solutions, as well. >> what's the solution to having a school open? rick and mortar? lights on? people physically present? we are doing our best with limited resources that we have
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to keep children safe, to keep to children joyful and happy. >> mental health services is the number one issue facing students right now. we need more funding and more social workers and therapists in our schools. >> the people making the decision need to be closer to the classroom or level. they need to trust people in the day today or they need to be coming here and seeing what's happening every day in the classroom. >> beatrice, your thoughts on what can be doneand needs to be done to help support our teachers. >> there are things we can do now. first, safety. they need more testing. we hear teachers and administrators and leadership that there is a role they can step up to make sure the needs
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are being met. we can start providing the mental wellness resources for teachers. they feel like they can take better care of themselves. one thing that we are doing at teach america is what is that look like? a framewor teachers are having conversations with a coach about the different aspects of wellness. to financial, physical, emotional wellness. also a free platform to access mental health resources. we should be doing that for all educators. they all deserve that right now. and when we look at the coming year, this is where we need systemic solutions and play. we have a governor who i believe has education as a priority. he revealed a new budget. there are over 2 billion for covid response. that will give us some of those resources to help teachers feel safe for everyone. the families and support staff.
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this $50 million to recruit and retain teachers. how that money is defined and how communities are going to use those funds and put things in place to lead teachers to feel supported. like they can sit dane a network , that's the question. the money is there. we have to engage a conversation in the community over the next few months to prioritize what teachers need. to some of it is wellness for themselves and some of it is for students and some of it is a lot more support and instructional process to help teachers hone in that process. it is a tall task. there are solutions that we can implement on a scale now. >> the executive director of teach from america, bay area. we wish you well. covid cases have been slowly declining over the past couple of weeks, the california
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department of health said there is a new sub variant. two cases reported so far in the bay area. state lawmakers reached the agreement to bring back covid sick leave for businesses employing 25 or more people. it expired last fall but it will provide two weeks of paid leave if you are caring for a family member with a virus or out for covid. also vaccine and appointment. joining me now marie seth. >> and our reporter. we will start with covid because it's top of mind for everyone. this week there was news by governor newsom and the state legislature to strengthen the mandate. >> this has been going out since last year. the governor announced he would include covid-19 on the list of
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required shots to go to public and private school. now as state senator has made the vaccine on his time wants to put that into statute which would eliminate the personal belief exemption. that's the ability of families to say we don't want to take it. you can still not take it if you have a medical reason but pass it would force a lot of families who might be on the fence to get vaccinated. we also saw scott weiner going a step further. he wants the legislature to pass the proposal that would make teens be able to get vaccinated without their parents approval. i think this is going to be a huge fight. a very big, sort of fraught issue. the last time it came up around
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the measles and other vaccines, there were a lot of disruptions and protests. >> republican leaders were tweeting their disapproval, of course, of these measures. you wonder how much power they have. >> the question is going to be if democrats can coalesce around this. i think there's going to be democrats who might not want to force families to do something like this. we will see. i've heard that this will be a big battle. >> big bruising fight. let's turn to what could be a potential fight nationally. u.s. supreme court justice, stephen breyer, announced after 30 years of service he is stepping down. this provides president biden with the space two point someone to that position. we're looking at a california replacement. >> it could be. one of president biden's promises as he would appoint a black woman to the scene. one of the names is justice kruger. she is one of the youngest justice ever appointed
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to the california supreme court. she's argued 12 cases before the court and served in the jstice department under both parties. she's more moderate. it may help her case in getting this. we will have to see. >> we will be watching for that. we should get news coming up fairly soon. house speaker. and, nancy pelosi, has announced she will seek another term. >> she is 81. >> room for another younger generation to come up? >> a debate in the democratic party for years. in some ways it's a surprise that she promised this would be her last term as speaker. it's pretty impressive anyone would stay on in congress after the leadership role. however, i don't think she wants to make herself a lame duck. she's helping other members with their fundraiser. one thing to keep in mind is
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she can retire or resign at any point. even sworn in for a new term. this puts the speculation locally who might run for the seat. it give her some strength heading into this year. i don't expect we will see her in washington for decades longer. >>she doesn't want to be quiet . a story you covered this week is san jose, the city implemented w, first in the nation gun-control measures. they are tackling this through insurance and fees. >> it's something that's never been tried before in any other city or state or jurisdiction. the thinking is that insurance makes it safer. you think about if you have car insurance you will be more careful about driving and making sure your car's oil is
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changed and taking safety classes. similarly, the san jose city council figured if you have insurance for the gun that you may own, you may lock up your guns more safely and ke safety training courses. they are also requiring that gun owners pay an annual fee. that fee goes towards all of the aftermath costs that come after gun violence. >> san jose has seen because of the shooting in gilroy and at the transportation agency down there. bta. another unusual this week, we saw a fire. my question is, a big fire in big sur. is january. we had rain in december. what are climate scientists saying? is it unusual or new normal? >> it's our new normal.
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we said this for years. we used to have a fire season set the end of summer into fall. and now it feels year round. it drives at home with a fire like this. other areas of the bay area, don't sleep on this. this started because someone was burning debris which was supposed to be a contlled burn. a real sense until we get more wet weather this will be a risk. people need to be on high alert all the time.'s i wanted to ask you about your guest on political break down. tell us about to the person you interviewed. she flipped a seat down there. >> republican from a district san bernardino county. she is try to carve out a path as a moderate. is gonna be fascinating to see. when she ran in 2018 and 2020 she said not the party of trump. she didn't want to get into it when i asked about the january 6
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commission and kevin mccarthy and whether it was good to put someone like jim jordan there. she has reached across the aisle far more than her colleagues. she is more republican in the district that it was last time. she's an immigrant. she has in incredible story. see how people like her deal with what the party is becoming. marching towards immigration and other issues. good news. it seemed and i love the story. butterflies are back. there has been concern. last year the butterfly count had been declining for many years. butterflies come in winter in california. the count declined to under 2000. this is in comparison to the 1980s where there were millions of monarchs that would, on the
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coastline. this year they are back up to a couple hundred thousand. would you hear about this? >> good news but scientists don't know why it's happening. that part is not clear. it is clear that they are definitely bouncing back. we can expect to see more monarch butterflies as you mentioned. expected to be over 200,000 butterflies. we could see them in the east bay and north bay. but we're not gonna see them in the city. if you do want to see them, wake up super early in the morning, that's what they are suggesting the peak time to see a monarch butterfly. >> early riser to see a butterfly. >> one other question happening out of san jose. santa clara county looking at holding a new jail. >> they are. this is coming after little more than a year of waffling between building a jail that has been the plan or
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using the money, instead, to build a behavioral health care facility to solve some of the issues of those who have mental illnesses who are incarcerated. it seems like now what's happening, they are moving forward on plans to build the jail but they are also looking at options for alternative solutions to incarcerating the mentally ill. we will have to see where the second part comes in we are expect to hear more in april. last question. any of you football fans? watching the game. the team is winni. 49ers won against the packers last week in green bay. this weekend they are going up against the rams in los angeles. it seems like the rams fans have not been able to keep the 49er fans out. they tried to scoop up all the
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tickets. do you want to give up prediction are tell us what you know? >> predictions arras rough. it's gonna be a close game. of the rams be the niners in 2018. a lot of people think it could be way closer than the last few games. it's going to be exciting. we've seen all the playoff games. it's come to the wire. it could happen here. it two california teams. one making it to the super bowl and it will be in l.a. >> exciting to watch. thank you so much for joining us kqed reporter. and political reporter extraordinaire. thank you. >> this week something beautiful should be called slithery. at the east bay place you can find snakes, lizards and a komodo dragon.
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there trial land scorpions and transient was.
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yamiche: president biden gets a supreme court pick. president biden: the person i will nominate will be the first black woman ever nominated to the united states supreme court. yamiche: justice steven breyer announces his retirement. and president biden vows his replacement will make history. >> i'm going to give the president nominee whoever that may be a fair look. yamiche: setting the stage for a nate debate ahead of the midterms. plus -- >> we're acting with equal focus and force to bolster ukraine's defenses and prepare a swift united response to further russian aggression. yamiche: tensions over russia and ukraine intensify. next. announcer: this is "washington week." corporate funding is provided br

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