Lack of teachers leaves students without math

by: Erin Coleman Updated:

A parent from a DeKalb County high school said her daughter hasn't had math class since the beginning of the year because of a teacher shortage.
DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. —

A parent from a DeKalb County high school said her daughter hasn't had math class since the beginning of the year because of a teacher shortage.

Channel 2's Erin Coleman found out that it's not just her daughter, but dozens of other students as well.

DeKalb school leaders said there are about 56 students who, because of the type of math class they were enrolled in, haven't been able to take that class. Meaning some of them haven't had any math this semester at all.

"I just was very concerned because we need math classes for our tests," student Kelsey Johnson said,

Johnson is a junior and one of those students at Southwest DeKalb High School who thought she was taking math this fall. But because there aren't enough teachers, she's taking physical education instead.

"This is unheard of. No math? No class? No substitute, no nothing?" Kelsey's mother, Anita, told Coleman.

She said she was shocked when she found out what was going on.

"It's totally crazy. Totally outside of my whole being," Anita Johnson said.

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So she sent an email to the school last week. The chairman of the math department emailed back saying: "You are correct in that these children, not just 11th grade, but 9th and 10th as well have been without a teacher. We are in need of math teachers."

A DeKalb Schools spokesperson told Coleman there are 15 math teachers at the school, but they are short two. Those teachers were set to teach a math support class for students who needed extra help. The class is considered an elective and one students wouldn't be tested on.

"(I'm) really concerned about the graduation test and graduating," Kelsey Johnson said.

That's why this family just wants math back.

"I just want them to figure out something," Anita Johnson said.

A DeKalb Schools representative told Coleman it took some time, but they have hired those additional two math teachers. They are supposed to start Tuesday.