As students in the tri-state are going back to school, several districts are still looking for teachers. There are 600 open teaching spots across the Hoosier state. There is also a shortage of school administrators, cafeteria workers, and substitute teachers.
Dr. Matt Thompson, the superintendent of the Metropolitan School District of Mt. Vernon, says they worked hard this summer, trying to hire more teachers and staff.
“Here at Mount Vernon, we’ve been very fortunate that we’ve been able to fill the openings that we have. We have a health and P.E. position still open,” says Dr. Thompson.
They ended up hiring almost all of the teachers they needed. Unfortunately, it still wasn’t enough but they are not alone.
“I would say my list of subs is probably cut in half right now,” Greg DeWeese, Principal of Marrs Elementary School. “We were sent our sub list the other day electronically and when I pulled it up, I think there was an audible gasp that came from my office because I couldn’t believe how small it was.”
Positions are expected to dwindle, Principal DeWeese has been at Marrs Elementary School for nearly 20 years. He says every year fewer people are applying for jobs at their school.
“I can remember when we used to post an elementary position, we would get 30 to 40 applicants. Now we’re getting five or six,” says DeWeese. He says more and more responsibilities are being put on teachers plates. Although, DeWeese says teachers aren’t getting paid accordingly
“The younger teachers, they need an incentive. They need to know that every year I come back, I make a little bit more and I’m building. When I get to this point I’ll be at this amount of money. Right now it’s not there,” says DeWeese.
Low pay is a problem in school districts around the region. In Kentucky, Daviess County has nearly 30 job openings listed on its website. In Illinois, Gallatin County has 10 job openings. In Indiana, the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation has more than 100.