Staunton City Schools prioritize retention approach in teacher job openings

Published: May. 23, 2023 at 6:31 PM EDT|Updated: May. 23, 2023 at 6:35 PM EDT
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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) - Summer vacation for schools means it’s open season for filling in teacher roles, including Staunton City Public Schools.

The Queen City’s school district has a to-do list of filling vacancies for Spanish teachers at the high school, a math and a science teacher at the middle school, and an elementary teacher — alongside several paraprofessional positions (instructional assistants) open as well. Officials say the national teacher shortage offers a challenge to find the very best for the administration’s standards.

“There are a lot of jobs out there a lot of positions open across the United States so we’re always competing with lots of people for positions, and trying to offer the best that we can offer in our division,” SCPS Director of Strategic Planning & Partnerships Ruth Jones Turner said.

On top of providing teachers more planning time and better breaks in the academic calendar, they are also looking to keep free childcare in their benefits.

“That’s almost a $2,000 annual savings for a family who has a child in about $1,500 in your savings for a family with children in the afterschool program,” Jones-Turner said.

They have high hopes for a new partnership with Mary Baldwin University, allowing staff to get teaching credentials at a major discount, to help fill in gaps.

Director Jones-Turner says the hiring process starts soon after openings arise, where qualified student teachers are welcome to apply as well. The school district is confident they will stay in great shape going into the next school year.