by Dr. Terry Stoops
Director of the Center for Effective Education, John Locke Foundation
Last week, Carolina Journal published my op-ed that criticized teacher vacancy panic. It is refreshing to find news articles that do not follow the media template. Eric Wildstein of the Gaston Gazette writes,
With Gaston’s public schools opening their doors to students Monday, most classrooms will again have permanent teachers there to greet students on the first day of school.
As of Thursday afternoon, the school system had just 12 teacher vacancies across the district. Most of the job openings are for the traditionally hard-to-staff subjects of science, math, and exceptional children.
“This is a really low number for us as we typically have that many vacancies at any given point in the year, especially when you consider that we employ more than 1,900 classroom teachers,” said school spokesman Todd Hagans. “Where there are vacancies, schools are able to rely on substitute teachers or teachers willing to return to the classroom on a temporary basis until a permanent teacher can be hired.”
Kudos to Gaston County Schools officials, who do a good job of putting their vacancies in context.