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KCKPS taking new approach to recruit substitute teachers

Posted at 3:19 AM, Nov 21, 2019

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — With a teacher shortage in schools across the country, the Kansas City, Kansas Public School District is taking a new approach to address the issue.

The district will host its first open house for substitute teachers and paraprofessionals on Thursday, Nov. 21. Instead of offering only information, the district will also conduct interviews and allow applicants to meet district leaders.

"I've been pairing with our recruiting department to try to figure out better ways to recruit substitutes. What we've done thus far is not working," Elizabeth Faircloth, the human resources adviser for KCKPS, said.

Faircloth has been with the district for two years. She said the shortage of educators is not unique to KCKPS, but they are working to implement new programs that will help, including its Paraprofessional to Teacher Program and KCKPS Teaching Fellows. The district is also one of the highest paying in the metro, offering substitutes $150 per day and sub paraprofessionals $125 per day.

"We are probably one of the only districts that is beginning to offer more training individualized to classroom management and learning models, so substitutes are coming into the classroom knowing what our teachers are teaching and how to actually teach that to our students," Faircloth said.

Substitute teachers are required to have at least 60 college credits to qualify for an emergency substitute license through the Kansas Department of Education. Paraprofessionals and substitute paras also need 60 college credit hours. Sub secretaries will need a high school diploma or GED, plus secretarial experience.

The open house on Thursday will begin with a group presentation from 5-5:30 p.m. Interviews will follow from 5:30-7 p.m.

The event will be at the KCKPS Central office located at 2010 N. 59th Street, Kansas City, Kansas. Someone with the district's Special Education department will be on-site to answer any questions related to para professionals.