Richmond down 75 teachers as students head back to school

Posted at 10:56 PM, Aug 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-23 07:36:17-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Students in Richmond head back to class in two weeks, but CBS 6 has learned the school system is still down 75 teachers.

Richmond Public Schools has over 2,000 teachers, but one Richmond parent said his daughter has already suffered because of the teacher shortage.

Last Year, Keon Booker said his daughter was without an English teacher for the majority of the school year at Martin Luther King Middle School in Richmond.

“She couldn’t even do a paragraph,” said Booker, “She couldn’t even do a sentence really.”

Booker said he had concerns with the upcoming school year as his daughter entered 8th grade.

“I’m very nervous with her going back there,” he said.

Keon Booker

Keon Booker

According to Richmond Public School leaders, there are still 75 essential teaching positions that need to be filled within the school system.

There are over 2,000 teaching positions in the school system.

Those positions include Math, English, Science and Special Education.

“We can’t have vacancies,” said Booker. “It’s very important that we teach the kids.”

Henrico County has 36 positions that need to be filled out of around 3,900 teaching positions in the county.

“I understand how families feel and I feel the same way,” Richmond School Board member Kim Gray said. “We are doing everything we can to get those positions filled.”

Gray said they’re hoping the recent hiring of the company PCG Educational Partnerships will help fill the vacant positions.

“In lieu of putting a long term sub in those positions, the company will help us identify individuals who have taught in other states or districts, but may not have the proper certifications to be put in a full time teaching position,” Gray said.

Gray said the school system is much farther along this year than they were at this time last year in terms of filling vacancies.

“We’re moving in the right direction, but we’re not quite there yet,” said Gray.

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