School districts face challenges recruiting new teachers

Now that school is out, school districts in central Florida are preparing for next year, which includes finding new teachers.

“It will definitely be a different way of hiring and recruiting this year than what we usually do,” Orange County Classroom Teachers Association President Wendy Doromal said.

Governor Ron DeSantis announced earlier this month he wants schools back in session at full capacity in August.

But, the president of the Orange County Classroom Teachers Association says getting teachers to go back will be a challenge.

RELATED: Governor DeSantis announces plan to reopen schools at full capacity in the fall

“There are going to be a lot of vacancies for teachers if they do reopen completely in the fall because we’ve been hearing from teachers that they will not go back,” Doromal said.

She says some teachers are scared to go back.

“As long as the cases are spiking, as long as there is no vaccine, they’re not going to put their health at risk,” Doromal said. “It’s not just their health. They’re going home to their own children. They go home to their elderly parents they’re taking care of.” 

So, districts are getting creative with how they’re trying to recruit.

Lake County Schools are using their students to design advertisements to fill vacant guidance counselor, teaching, and school psychologist positions.

In Orange County, the district is hosting a virtual job fair this month to try to bring new teachers in during the pandemic.

“They’re not going to have a big job fair where all the people come at once and go from principal to principal looking at openings,” Doromal said.