Pinellas invites 640 teachers to job fair today
The Pinellas County School District is holding its first job fair today, with more than 600 teachers invited to attend.
Of those, 79 are teachers who were involuntarily moved from their current position. The job fair was invitation only and part of the district's efforts to recruit the best teachers before they get snapped up elsewhere. To get an invitation, candidates had to fill out an "interest form" and an application. They were asked for two letters of reference, college transcripts and a copy of their out of state teaching certificate, if applicable.
Job candidates' name tags were color coded based on their status and qualifications. Black name tags signified involuntary transfers, while a green dot meant a candidate was ready to hire, and a yellow dot meant a candidate hadn't provided all of the necessary documentation.
Enrollment is shrinking in Pinellas, but the district still hires 300 to 400 teachers every year because of vacancies from resignations and retirements. It's not clear how many jobs were available at the fair. There's been a lot of upheaval this year because of staffing changes at the five schools going through a state-mandated turnaround and the consolidation of the district's three special education centers.
The Gradebook has heard a few complaints about the job fair from candidates who said it was too packed to get an interview and that some principals were leaving early. The fair is supposed last all day. Has anyone been there? What was your experience? Did you think it was useful?
Another word on jobs for teachers - The district also is hiring separately for Summer Bridge, the district's new six-week summer school program, which starts Monday. So far, 442 teachers have been hired for elementary sessions, 121 teachers have been hired for the middle school sessions, and about 50 teachers have been hired for high school.