CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- It’s just over a month away from the start of the new school year and local school districts have jobs they need to fill.
John Read, CEO of Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative, says, “There’s a chronic shortage of qualified teachers.”
According to local school district employment boards, Dorchester District 2 has 21 teacher vacancies, Charleston County has 72, and Berkeley County has 84. Dorchester District 4 does not have their openings posted publicly, and did not respond to News 2’s request for the number of jobs available.
Read says, “It’s most acute in Charleston County, but it extends across all four districts. Dorchester 4 also in the acute phase. It’s most concentrated in technical disciplines like the STEM teaching jobs, but it extends really across the board.”
The Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative works to solve this problem in public schools. The TCCC’s CEO says low pay continues to be an issue and that paired with challenging early years in the field leads to an average of 20% of teachers quitting within five years.
Read says, “When hired, a teacher is almost always assigned to the most challenging school the district has to offer because those jobs go unfilled by teachers with experience. They’re faced with an enormously difficult task and with very little professional development.”
He says there are some solutions.
Read says, “A school district can focus on incentives, as the Charleston County School District is now doing, to draw the better teachers into the most challenging schools and pay systems can be more merit based than they are.”
Another step is encouraging local businesses to take interest in the education system training the next workforce.
Read says, “I think it’s for the community to join forces with the district and say what are we going to do to deal with the chronic shortage, beginning with welcoming and honoring the position and finding ways to make it possible for them to do their jobs.”
For a closer look at the specific teaching and non-teaching positions available, follow the links below.
For Berkeley County School District, click here.
For Charleston County School District, click here.
For Dorchester District 2, click here.
For Dorchester District 4, click here.