As part of my duties I get the opportunity to recruit new teachers to our district. As it has been widely publicized, we are in a teacher shortage in most of our country. Recruiting teachers has become very competitive and will continue to be so for some time. Bringing new teachers to our district who are knowledgeable in their content, creative, and energetic amongst other traits will always be a high priority. Everyone knows the importance of a good teacher in a student's life. Through this process Weber School District continues to do very well. I attribute this to many different factors but here are a couple that I feel have made a difference:
- There is a great climate in our district. Our Superintendent has set a great tone by teaching the "Weber Way" to our leadership where educating the whole child and treating people fairly are important. One of the questions we ask in our interviews as we try and find teachers is "Why do you want to teach in Weber"? Most of their answers reflect the positive things they have heard about our district from others. They mention good parent support, good communities to live in, supportive administration and co-workers and so on.
- We have a good mentoring program where a new teacher is assigned a mentor for the first three years of their education. Research has shown that if a teacher leaves the profession they usually do so in the first five years and the number one reason is the lack of support they have felt. We take that seriously. We have hired retired master teachers to mentor these new educators. As we ask for feedback from our new teachers about their mentors, they have expressed gratitude for someone knowledgeable to turn to for help that has the time to give the help when needed. This has helped us be in the top three to four districts in the state as far as retaining our teachers.
I share this information because it has been a cumulative effort from students, parents, staff, and administration to attract good teachers to our district. Thanks to everyone for their efforts to provide the best education possible for students.