Any jobs out there for teachers? Who is hiring? And is it only in hard-to-fill slots?

Who is still hiring teachers this year? (AJC file)

Who is still hiring teachers this year? (AJC file)

A reader sent me these questions about teaching jobs in Georgia, which I decided to post as most of you are far better equipped to respond.

The AJC has reported that some systems are hiring, including Gwinnett, which is bringing in 530 new teachers for the upcoming school year. However, the AJC notes in its news story that Gwinnett has already filled 359 of the 530 jobs, including some through an annual spring job fair that concentrates on recruitment of teachers in math, science and special needs. But the system is still encouraging applicants with those qualifications to apply as jobs remain in those hard-to-fill areas

Here are the reader’s questions:

I recently have moved out of GA, but I still try to keep up with some of the news. I have a good number of friends who have either graduated from university with teaching degrees or will be very shortly who are encountering difficulties with finding a teaching position.

Can you provide some insight (maybe with a blog post) into the hiring situation for teachers? I’ve heard that large systems like Cobb and Gwinnett are hiring a large number of teachers and yet my friends have not found any openings to apply for, nor have they gotten any responses. In particular, I was looking to see if you could answer the following questions:

- How competitive is the market right now?

- Are school systems, due to lower/smaller budgets, looking to hire graduates with Bachelor’s degrees rather than Master’s level graduates because they cost less?

- In line with that, is the best advice now to go ahead and try to get experience either as a private tutor or some sort of teaching experience rather than extend schooling and going for a master’s degree? I feel like many are misguided in thinking that if they get a master’s degree they will be guaranteed a job.

- What advice is there for upcoming graduates and recent graduates to get the much needed experience to land a teaching job?

I hope you are able to address these issues, as I think there are plenty of people interested in the current hiring situation at Georgia public schools. Thanks, and I look forward to your responses.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

107 comments Add your comment

Dr. Craig Spinks/ Augusta

July 24th, 2011
2:24 pm

To broaden the topic from teacher jobs to educator jobs, are there vacancies for honest, caring site- and county-office-based administrators in our state?

Particularly, should any system need a strong, brave, caring, honest and experienced educational leader, a friend might fit its bill. Please e-mail me at craigspinks@aol.com with the relevant contact info. Thanks in advance.

catlady

July 24th, 2011
2:40 pm

I can only (barely) speak about my small rural county. No hiring to mention. It is very hard to get on here s you have a family connection. one group that does seem to have a little advantage are those who are willing to sub. Let them see what you can do. Used to be you could be an aide and then come in but lately the only time I have seen that work is in sped. I don’t think a master’s hurts you-our supt said the local difference in $ between a first year and a PhD is not that much.

Good luck!

catlady

July 24th, 2011
2:42 pm

Which is really a statement of how tiny our local supplement is now!

Newly Rehired Teacher

July 24th, 2011
2:43 pm

I’m always amazed at how Gwinnett “hires” hundreds of teachers each year after a spring of hundreds of displacements and unreported non-renewals. I personally know some of the approximately 300 displaced Gwinnett teachers this year. I was one of those non-renewals from last year with a perfect observation record and no forewarning whatsoever.

After a year and a half, I will finally be employed as an educator again when school starts back. Even with experience, a master’s degree, and certification in the critical needs areas, I have found it very difficult to obtain a teaching position in the Metro Atlanta area. The jobs are there, but there are multiple people vying for the same few positions.

tim

July 24th, 2011
2:52 pm

Stop using the word ‘educator”. Is “teacher” a bad word?? Is the next word “supereducator’?

“Educators” have ruined the “education” process. What crap. Wake up!

no mas

July 24th, 2011
2:59 pm

@Dr Craig Spinks

Well, DeKalb needs a Superintendent. And as Asst Superintendent for Teaching and Learning. It could be argued that they need a whole lot more, but the above are the only positions marked “Interim”…

Sharon Pitts must Go

July 24th, 2011
4:48 pm

Hall Leftover List
1.Sharon Pitts
2.Susan Dyer
3.Lester McKee
4.Chuck Burbridge
5.Larry Hoskins
6.Keith Brommery

valery harris

July 24th, 2011
5:04 pm

I am a graduate of Ga. Public School and University. I am appalled at what is happening in the district. I don’t see how the district can have any credibility. I am very glad to be a teacher with a union that supports us. We have a contract to stand on and we would NEVER allow an administrator to intimidate our teachers to the extent that was witnessed in APS.The entire system is corrupt. It is time to clean house and Ga. teachers get a union.

ANGELA

July 24th, 2011
5:08 pm

@Sharon Pitts must Go,

Who ever you are, you are determined to get this lady out of your seat. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I really love your persistance.

ANGELA

July 24th, 2011
5:16 pm

@Newly Rehired Teacher,

I truly wish you the best in your new job. Please be careful still because there are so many administrators that will be happy to do to you what Gwinnett did. They can do it easily because of the last one in and first one out (underlined policy). One thing you also, might want to consider if things look bleek at any point to teach aboard. Look under the teaching aboard jobs. I would look at the US programs for the most part. Best Wishes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

d

July 24th, 2011
5:24 pm

@Tim – educators didn’t ruin education, people who haven’t been in a classroom since they graduated from high school and don’t have a clue what is really going on yet somehow manage to get themselves elected time and time again have ruined education.

ANGELA

July 24th, 2011
5:24 pm

Sharon Pitts must Go

July 24th, 2011
5:26 pm

Enter your comments here

Ole Guy

July 24th, 2011
7:06 pm

Newly Rehired Teacher, your situation speaks volums upon volums of just what’s wrong with the Teacher Corps. It is indeed a good thing that YOU, personally, have regained employment, however, it is extremely evident that YOU, the teacher corps, are quite willing to allow yourselves, as a profession, to be pushed around at the convenience of those who, by YOUR default, are your masters. You, Angela, and a host of teachers whose comments seem to appear as thinly veiled wimpers coming from scared rabbits scampering about the hunting fields known as YOUR profession ALL exemplify just what the 21st Century educator has become. Like those scared rabbits, you all seem too timid to attract the unwanted attentions of the “big bad wolf handlers” who you have come to fear. Rather than (for the umpteenth time) step up to the plate, take command of your professions, and send the unmistakable message to these “handlers” that you (as a group of professionals) will no longer accept this horseshux treatment, you continue with the “THANKYOU SIR MAY I HAVE ANOTHER” attitudes, being grateful that your handlers have provided you with a job which you may perform only under the closest of scrutiny by those who have no idea whatsoever as to what you or they are doing.

Sleep well, Teach…you have your job.

cricket

July 24th, 2011
7:47 pm

You can’t “teach” under current conditions and maintain your integrity. What I was asked to do my last couple of years before I quit hurt the kids more than it helped them. I just couldn’t do it anymore and look at myself in the mirror at the end of the day.

long time educator

July 24th, 2011
8:02 pm

@Tim, I use the word educator to include all the roles I have played in public school; high school English teacher, fifth grade homeroom teacher, gifted K-8, media specialist, assistant principal and principal. Whatever the hat, I have always seen my job as educating students.

long time educator

July 24th, 2011
8:10 pm

As far as advice on getting a job: in my medium size district, principals do the hiring. Although our county may post the positions and take resumes, to be effective, you need to go to the schools, introduce yourself to the principal, if possible, and to especially to the secretary. Take a copy of your resume that includes a paper-clipped picture (so they can remember which one you are in the stack of 50). Be nice to the secretary; she may put your resume on top or comment to the principal that “this one looks promising.” Also get on the sub list of the schools where you want to work and realize that the whole time you are there, you are interviewing. Be a volunteer and a team player and the next time a job comes available, you should get an interview. Good luck!

oldtimer

July 24th, 2011
8:14 pm

Here in TN there are jobs. The pay and benefits are not as good. ($20,000 than CC) Teachers are supported by administrators. AND best of all…HS kids were nice and fun..I finished out enough time to get a very small TN retirement. Unlike Clayton Co. kids, you would get experience and living in a rural environment has many benefits. Another benefit is no state income tax and low property costs.

oldtimer

July 24th, 2011
8:15 pm

Long-time educator is also correct…and subbing will not hurt.

IEE

July 24th, 2011
8:25 pm

@ Tim – The correct language is educator. This is inclusive language. Wow, grow-up my friend!

Cobb Teacher 2

July 24th, 2011
8:27 pm

@Ole Guy:

Can you please make a point? Your post makes no sense and is one of the most ridiculous I have ever read. Also, you may be interested to know that the correct spelling is “volumes” in your above post. Rather than spend time coming up with ways to be condescending towards teachers (as is frequently the case with your posts), offer up real solutions to improve the current climate in education.

Issues facing teachers and our children are real and no joking matter. Sure, it would be wonderful to be able to stand up politicians and administrators and say that we aren’t going to do things their way and take back our profession, but the fact remains that those who don’t play by the rules and open their mouths a few too many times will find themselves locked out of the job market. As long as taxes are used to fund education, we will have government involvement. Working for a private school is an option (although those jobs also remain scarce), but you have to be willing to make a large financial sacrifice. I looked into two private schools and found that they pay would be at least $10,000 less. That’s just not a hit I can take right now. My guess is that in this economy, most teachers feel the same.

The fact still remains that good teachers can and do rise above these circumstances. I always have an improvement goal for the summer, and this time it was becoming more involved in blogging. It was a worthwhile goal. I have found some incredible educators out there who are using their creativity and innovation to teach lessons that not only meet state/core standards, but get students invovled in their learning through technololgy, projects, and many other ways. They aren’t standing around taking orders from their “handlers” as you call them. Chances are, these are the teachers who are left alone to do their jobs. They don’t buck the system, they find ways to work within the system. Isn’t that the key to success in any job?

Please explain, sir,your solutions to the problems we face.

Paulo977

July 24th, 2011
8:34 pm

d

“people who haven’t been in a classroom since they graduated from high school and don’t have a clue what is really going on yet somehow manage to get themselves elected time and time again have ruined education”!!!!!!!!!!!!

Absolutely…. and then ’sheeple’ support them!!

Paulo977

July 24th, 2011
9:09 pm

Cobb
Teacher 2

“Chances are, these are the teachers who are left alone to do their jobs. They don’t buck the system, they find ways to work within the system. Isn’t that the key to success in any job? ”

I salute you and i know what it is like . However there are so many volatile factors out there that impact what is going on in classrooms that there
HAS to be ‘enlightened’ support from those who ‘profess’ to call the shots re: EDUCATION

jxxx

July 24th, 2011
9:30 pm

I have a co-worker that worked abroad during our spring break . It was a great experience that he shared with our staff via video and thru the students that he taught in Europe.

Truth

July 24th, 2011
10:30 pm

One of the reasons for the APS scandal is to hire a different favor; that’s how they do! Unchecked, watch how test score “SOAR”; you like them folks riding in on the big white horses and all.

FBT

July 24th, 2011
10:47 pm

A friend just got a job teaching middle school after a two year search. She has a master’s degree and was told 145 applied for the social studies position in a metro area school.

SallyB

July 24th, 2011
11:15 pm

While I am usually the one to point out that “correlation” DOES NOT mean “causation”, I just cannot resist this comparison, pointed out to me by colleagues in other states:

States with strong REAL teachers’ unions deliver higher student achievement, are allowed to enforce sound and more effective discipline , are provided with stronger and more capable administrators, reap not only more job satisfaction but earn higher, more appropriate paychecks, and enjoy the respect for the profession that is sorely lacking here.

www.honeyfern.org

July 24th, 2011
11:29 pm

I guess the larger question might be even if there are jobs in education, who would want to fill them?

And I did see on the news the other night that Georgia actually has a surplus of certified teachers, unlike many states, even in math and science.

just watching

July 24th, 2011
11:48 pm

@valery…if you are in GA you do NOT have a UNION supporting you, just an association. No collective bargaining.

Dr. Craig Spinks/ Augusta

July 24th, 2011
11:54 pm

(N)o mas,

No, thanks.

My friend needs a less stressful work place, not a more stressful one.

seen it all

July 25th, 2011
6:38 am

I think the whole thing is disgusting. We are back to the dark, olden ages. People used to sub back in the 70’s and 80’s because they couldn’t get a teaching job otherwise. They needed to do anything to get their feet in the door. We are back to that again.

In the metro Atlanta area, the bottom fell out of the teaching job market in 2009. I saw school systems that were hiring 700, 800, 900 teachers a year drop to 50 in two years. When I first started with my last system in Georgia, I could have had almost my pick of any teaching job I wanted (because of my experience). When I left my last school, I actually left the country because the job market was so horrific. I couldn’t get not one interview. One principal told me that she got 600 applications for one fourth grade teaching position. I actually felt sorry for the principals. The people really were inundated with applications.

I went overseas to teach. Best decision I ever made. Is my teaching situation the best? No. It is probably the worst teaching job I have ever had. This year was tons better than last year. But they big thing is that I have made more money than I EVER would have made sloughing it out teaching in metro Atlanta. I paid off all my bills, I am SAVING money, and getting a master’s degree in the process.

After this year, I may leaving teaching altogether. The situation is just too grim now. Because of the tight job market, people are eating crap from administrators and taking it lying down. I hear of local school systems firing HUNDREDS of teachers using the bogus, lie excuse of “poor evaluations.”

Forget it. Go overseas. See the world. Free of charge. Most international teaching jobs offer paid airfare to and from the school site, free accommodation, health benefits, and some of the better schools offer housing and moving allowances. I got $5400 to buy furniture for my apartment. I pay no taxes and no insurance. Overall I make TWICE as much now than I made back home. I got paid less and had to pay social secruity, federal, state, and local sales taxes. I had to pay insurance, union dues, contribute to the teacher retirement fund, and pay rent. Here, I pay none of that. And when I leave I even get one month’s salary for each year of service.

Interested?

Kah

July 25th, 2011
7:00 am

Kudos to “Cobb teacher 2″.. It was very refreshing to read your comments…have a great school year.

www.honeyfern.org

July 25th, 2011
9:05 am

Seen it all: please email me at suzannah@honeyfern.org. Thanks.

Batgirl

July 25th, 2011
10:03 am

@seen it all, please post a link to websites for overseas jobs. I love my job and would love to stay in it until I retire, but in the current environment, I don’t see it happening.

I just looked on teachgeorgia.org. Paulding County had the most jobs posted with 27 listings. A couple of other systems listed 10-20. Gwinnett County had only eight jobs listed. My own system listed only five, but we received an e-mail last week with eight jobs posted. A couple of systems in my area had no jobs posted, but if you go to their websites they have 8-10. So I would advise new teachers not to be discouraged by the postings on teachgeorgia. If you are interested in a particular system, go to their website, and, of course, make personal contact. Good luck!

My 2cents

July 25th, 2011
10:14 am

While discussing openings for teachers and noting that there are really no shortages of teachers – including math and science teachers, can someone PLEASE explain to me why we have to have H1B teachers (math and science teachers from foreign countries)? As a parent of a child who has attention issues I know that my child tunes out teachers who have difficulty expressing themselves clearly in english. I know my child is not the only one, the mother of one of my child’s classmates told me how her child cries on the way to school because of this. Why do we have to have foreigners teaching math and science?

Fedup

July 25th, 2011
10:37 am

As yet another example of how bad the Clayton County Schools are, you can see even today a lengthy list of teacher vacancies…and an unusually high number of early childhood positions. New teacher orientation begins this week in that county and they have a ton of vacancies…the problem is, nobody in their right mind would want to be a part of this district and the leadership issues that have soured everyone who works there. The only folks who will go there are desperate and probably not perceived as good candidates by the other districts where they have applied….in other words, the cycle of poor teachers will continue to harm any chance of success for the kids in this district.

gradgrind

July 25th, 2011
10:37 am

I tried to apply through TAPP (alternative certification). Here’s how it works: You attend an orientation and buy some textbooks. You fill out applications and forms. You drive around to schools that sound interesting. Everything depends on the principal. It’s a catch-22, though. You have to get into TAPP to get the principal to approve you, and you have to get the principal to approve you to get into TAPP. In other words, it’s purely arbitrary. Maybe principals are handing out patronage in the form of teaching slots.

Beck

July 25th, 2011
10:45 am

My 2cents –

Maybe you should expose your child to more people from other places so that they can adjust to hearing the majority of the world speak.

Also, I hate to be a pessimist, but in order for him or her to get a job in an American company when he or she grows up your child may need to either adjust to living and working in a foreign country and hearing many others speak English with an accent and/or learn another language.

It is truly a global society and you may want to prepare your child for it.

Fedup

July 25th, 2011
11:29 am

My 2cents…..better get used to it, especially if your kids go to college…….

Eddie G

July 25th, 2011
11:31 am

@SallyB…….

States with REAL teacher’s unions might have higher academic achievements (would love to see your basis for this statement)………but here is my guess on why that would be true. Most of the states that have REAL teacher’s unions aren’t dealing with the sorry demographics that Georgia teachers deal with.

Unions were a good idea about 100 years ago to get kids out of factories and to do away with sweat factories. But they are no longer needed.

Fedup

July 25th, 2011
11:45 am

I have news for you union fans…..I taught in Illinois – Teamsters run the teachers’ union in that State…and I assure you, student discipline is no better or worse and the demographics are not that different….let’s face it….the huge number of bad parents and bad parenting skills has killed public education…..

Ed

July 25th, 2011
12:05 pm

RIFed

July 25th, 2011
3:03 pm

The job market is tight even for experienced teachers with a masters degree. My contract was not renewed because I did not have “tenure”. My former district stopped paying a salary supplement for pre-k teachers, so I was given the option to return to the same job (with a larger class size) and a much lower salary. It’s really insulting. The district’s job board has lots of openings for pre-k teachers, but I’m taking my chances and looking elsewhere. I might get certified in special education or leave teaching completely.

Paulo977

July 25th, 2011
3:19 pm

Cobb
Teacher2

For you and others who rise above adverse circumstances…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiHjLu975z0

MB

July 25th, 2011
3:33 pm

My2cents: Both of my sons had the AP Calc teacher at our HS (for whom English was not a native language). MANY times as the school year started, I heard the parents complain that their children could not understand him, they were struggling, on and on. Very few actually left the class, though, and he continues an amazing pass rate on AP Calc exams. The kids learned to understand him (better then than in a class of 400, probably), found him engaging and helpful, and LEARNED. Isn’t that the point?

thomas

July 25th, 2011
4:26 pm

Who are the employers of the teachers? Individual schools or the district? If it is district, let the district handle the hiring and assign teachers to schools. Also, move teachers around more often across schools. There is no reason for any teacher to be teaching in the same building the same grade level for 15 years. They need to move around, teach different grades. They are count-level public servants.

AlreadySheared

July 25th, 2011
4:31 pm

“Also, move teachers around more often across schools. There is no reason for any teacher to be teaching in the same building the same grade level for 15 years. They need to move around, teach different grades. They are count-level public servants.”

i) I don’t know what a “count-level public servant” is, but it sounds degrading – is it like a cog in a machine?

ii) Move teachers around? What if they like where they are and want to stay there? It doesn’t matter? Mmmm… just SAVORING the rich aroma of respect wafting from your post….

ChristieS.

July 25th, 2011
6:08 pm

RIF’d, I know several Pre-K teachers who are leaving their Pre-K classrooms and moving into the general K-5 class because of the salary reductions. You are not alone.

Right the wrongs!!!

July 25th, 2011
7:11 pm

@Newly Rehired, good for you!!! Gwinnett and Cobb are to school districts that abused teachers with that nonrenewal trick for budgetary reasons. How sick is it to ruin people’s careers to solve your problems. All the counties that did that should make an unprecedented effort to right the wrong they did to these people. They have to know that a nonrenewal is a death blow to a teaching career. No other county will even talk to you.

There are many principals who participated in this scam, which is a form of cheating for the higher ups in the system just as APS principals did, but the principal at Russell Elementary in Cobb is one that I know of. Start with her. Identify everyone that this was done to and fix it…RIGHT THE WRONG!

Right the wrongs!!!

July 25th, 2011
7:13 pm

…two school districts…