Drury University addresses teacher shortage by expanding degree offerings

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 16, 2023 – Drury University’s evening and online program, Drury GO, will soon expand opportunities for students to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. This Fall Monett and Harrisonville communities can attend classes in-person or online at satellite locations in their areas.

The extended locations are geared toward helping with Missouri’s current teacher shortage in areas of the state where teachers are needed, and educator preparation programs are scarce. “We have a critical need in Missouri and across the country for elementary classroom teachers. In 2022, Missouri was short 532 elementary school teachers (grades 1-6) making this the highest shortage area across the state,” said Chrystal Mayfield, superintendent of Strasburg C-3 School District. “It is wonderful that people in Cass County and surrounding areas can earn a degree in elementary education right here in Harrisonville.”

Currently, all Drury GO students can complete foundational coursework to become an elementary teacher through the Associate of Science in Foundations in Education. Those courses are entirely online. The expansion now provides students with the option for seated, online and synchronous courses in Monett and Harrisonville. Currently, Drury GO offers a similar program in St. Robert.

Dean of Drury’s School of Education & Child Development, Dr. Natalie Precise, grew up in the Monett area and says this will be a valuable opportunity for Southwest Missouri. “Creating a pathway for bright students to become amazing elementary educators in my home area of Southwest Missouri is an incredible feeling.” When asked about the expansion in Harrisonville, Precise said, “Harrisonville is in a unique position to help numerous districts in their area of the state fill needed teacher positions. I am sure this program will be well received.”

Precise added that Drury’s School of Education & Child Development will maintain their high standards and rigor for the auxiliary locations.


Media Contact: Jasmine Cooper, Director of University Communications and Media Relations – (417) 873-7390 or