Carol Rinke is Associate Professor of science and mathematics education at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York.
A graduate of Stanford University and Teachers College, Columbia University, she worked as a math and science teacher in a variety of K-12 settings, including the New York City public schools. Concerned about the challenges she observed recruiting and retaining teachers, particularly in hard-to-staff math and science classrooms, she returned to graduate school at the University of Maryland College Park to pursue teacher preparation.
At Marist, Dr. Rinke teaches a STEM methods block for pre-service elementary teachers and is passionate about developing expertise in the new STEM literacies. Dr. Rinke has over 20 publications in the field of STEM teacher development, including a 2014 book with Rowman & Littlefield press entitled Why Half of Teachers Leave the Classroom: Understanding Recruitment and Retention in Today's Schools.
"Teaching as Exploration: The Difficult Road Out of the Classroom," published in Teaching and Teacher Education, follows the career pathways of a cohort of urban teachers over a seven-year period. This article finds that for those who ultimately decide to leave education, the path to a new career can be both challenging and costly. However, it also identifies the lasting influence of teaching on the personal and professional lives of educators.
"Understanding Teachers' Careers: Linking Professional Life to Professional Path," published in Educational Research Review, synthesizes current research in the field of teacher retention. It finds that most research argues for either individual or workplace factors in understanding why teachers leave the classroom at elevated rates. This article argues for a closer look at the process of decision-making over time as a means of understanding how teachers shape their own careers in today's classrooms.