With the first day of school just weeks away, many Texas school districts are having a very difficult time filling teacher vacancies. Some large districts are reporting hundreds of openings while smaller districts are reporting having no applicants for posted teacher positions.
Districts are being forced to think about implementing different strategies to recruit and attract teacher applicants, recognizing the need for development of short-term and long-term marketing strategies to attract teachers to their district.
Possible strategies districts can use to recruit teachers and increase their applicant pool include:
- Contact the alternative certification programs in your area
- Reach out to your Education Service Center (ESC)
- Attend in-person or virtual job fairs or host your own
- Contact the nearest universities and colleges
- Post vacancies on social media (e.g., Facebook), employment websites (e.g., Indeed, LinkedIn, CareerBuilder), and professional organization websites
- Market to your own community through the local newspaper and the district website by sharing teacher success stories and highlighting the impact teachers make on students
- Look within your own district (e.g., student teachers, instructional aides, substitute teachers) for possible applicants
- Encourage current teachers to reach out to possible applicants
- Offer a signing bonus
- Advertise the district’s benefits and employment opportunities
- Create a “grow your own” program
- Investigate non-traditional ways to certify unqualified applicants through available permits or waivers
Permits and Waivers
Keep in mind there are no COVID-19 teacher certification waivers in effect currently from the commissioner of education. But districts can use a variety of available permits and waivers from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to certify applicants for the upcoming school year. See 7 Ways to Qualify an Uncertified Teacher for more information on each permit and waiver.
The human resources department should work collaboratively with principals, teachers, and district departments including the communications department, technology department, and curriculum department to brainstorm recruiting strategies that could work for their specific district.
For additional ideas on how to create a marketing and recruiting plan for your district, see Recruiting (TASB login required) in the HR Library.
Cheryl Hoover joined HR Services in 2018. She assists with staffing and HR reviews, training, and other HR projects. During Hoover’s public school career, she served as an executive director of curriculum and principal leadership, executive director of human resources, principal, assistant principal, teacher, and coach.
Hoover earned her bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas at Austin and obtained her master’s degree from Texas State University. She is a certified PHR.
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