Thursday, November 29, 2012
The Dorchester School District 2 continues its mission to recruit and retain top quality teachers and staff.
That was the message DD2 Personnel Director Randy Eads delivered to the DD2 Board of Trustees during its Nov. 26 meeting.
Eads presented the annual personnel report, which outlined the district’s goals, missions, and accomplishments with regard to recruiting top quality employees.
With 2,585 employees, DD2 is the largest employer in Dorchester County, Eads noted. That number has increased from a little more than 1,900 in 2002, reflecting the growth in the area and in the district’s needs.
Nonetheless, despite the challenges of recruitment these days, the district continues to attract well qualified teachers, Eads said. This year the district hired 156 National Board Certified teachers, six more than last year. In addition, 61 percent of the district’s teachers hold masters degrees and above, he said.
Of teachers hired this year, 121 have bachelors degrees, 12 have bachelors plus 18 hours, 87 have masters degrees, 31 have masters plus 30 hours, and one has a doctorate.
The mix of experience levels is diverse as well, with around 50 percent of the district’s teachers having ten years or less experience and 20 percent having 20 years or more experience, Eads noted.
The personnel department is also utilizing technology in a variety of ways to aid in recruitment, retention, evaluations, and other aspects of human resources, such as record keeping and storage. The department also maintains and administers the substitute teacher program via computer network, he said.
The district has done extensive recruiting both in and out of state, traveling to such areas as Ohio and Michigan to interview potential candidates. Interestingly enough, many contract hires are teachers who have relocated with their families from other districts. They did not come here for the sole purpose of seeking employment with DD2 but are qualified teachers who decide to seek employment with the district once they are here.
Boardmember Charlie Stoudenmire noted that recruitment of teachers is a competitive undertaking. For example, he noted that Gwinnett County, Ga., the fastest growing area in the country, pays teachers some $10,000 more than DD2, as well as sign on bonuses.
“I don’t know if the public know it, but recruiting teachers can be almost as competitive as recruiting football players,” he said. “When they come here the things they’re looking at are community support, test scores, and support within the district. I think that says something about what we’re doing here.”