TPS Holds Meet-And-Greet, Hopes To Fill Several Positions

Monday, March 9th 2015, 10:53 pm
By: News On 6

As of Monday night, Tulsa Public Schools is hiring 350 teachers. The district hosted a meet-and-greet to connect potential employees to principals.

One Tulsa teacher said she hopes it fills vacancies in her school.

The district is adding 120 positions this year, mainly in science, technology, engineering, math and early childhood education.

Because of that, and current vacancies, the district needs to up its staff.

Eighth grade English teacher Taylor Staab said consistency in the classroom can make all the difference in a student's learning.

"The students aren't getting the education that they deserve because the substitute, their forte isn't the classroom that they had to walk into today," Staab said.

Tulsa Public Schools currently has 42 long-term substitutes, and Staab sees the effects at Central Junior High.

"My kids were with a substitute for the second semester, for the entire second semester, and it's heartbreaking. And it hurts them," she said.

That's part of the reason the district is hiring; but hiring is easier said than done.

Erin Sexson will soon have a degree in education from Oklahoma State. Most of her class is taking jobs out of state because of better pay.

"Maybe if Oklahoma paid better, they wouldn't have as many vacancies," she said.

Sexson's one of the soon-to-be college grads at the TPS meet-and-greet, getting her face in front of principals.

"I still think Tulsa is expecting the best teachers, even with the vacancies. So it's helpful, but also, you have to be at the top of your game," she said.

TPS Recruiter Ashley Whitehead was pleased with the turnout.

"We are really excited for events like this where we have more than 150 people here that are specifically interested in Tulsa," Whitehead said.

The district expects to fill up to 100 positions through Teach for America, a program Staab is a part of and recommends.

"There's a reason that you come to school every day and it's not because of the wages, necessarily, it's because of the kids," she said.

If you are interested in a teaching position, but missed the meet-and-greet, you can find more information here.

The starting pay is $33,000 in Tulsa; teachers earn about $10,000 more in the Dallas/Fort Worth-area districts.