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Bend-La Pine Schools still working to fill fall job openings; High Desert ESD seeks more substitute teachers

Campaign assures enough bus drivers; more than 250 substitutes needed

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Anywhere you go on the High Desert, you’ve probably realized staffing has been a major challenge, affecting how many businesses and services operate.

With the start of school just around the corner, Bend-La Pine Schools is still looking for workers to fill some positions.

Ryan Kelling, Director of Recruitment and Retention, shared their most important need.

"We're focusing our efforts right now on the support staff -- our nutrition services workers, custodians, and educational assistants in our Special Education program," Kelling said Monday.

Kelling said fortunately, the job fairs they’ve put on have been helping, and they had one just last week.

"We were able to have 15 of them apply, and now we’re just waiting to see through the interview process what happens," he said.

One highlight, he said, is being able to to hire enough bus drivers.

"We had a wonderfully terrific campaign to hire bus drivers," Kelling said. "We’re very successful in that, and we’re excited we’ll be at capacity for bus drivers this year.” 

Kristen Johns, resource manager for the High Desert Education Service District, said there’s still a big need for substitute teachers.

"We currently have a substitute 'pull' of about 730, and we would really like to get that up to about 1,000," Johns said. "That’s really our sweet spot, where we are covering all of our absences and we are able to offer our subs plenty of work.”

Last year, HDESD offered bonus incentives every month through the end of the school term.

This year, more options are being explored, but nothing is finalized just yet. 

Johns said the substitute teaching program is very flexible. 

"For subs who want to work just a couple of days a week, for retirees, for parents who maybe volunteer in schools and would like to move into the substitute pool, we would be happy to help them do that," she said. "There are many options for licensing, for those who are not licensed teachers.” 

Click here to seek and apply for positions offered for Bend-La Pine Schools.

Click here to seek and apply for substitute teacher positions offered through the High Desert Education Service District.

Article Topic Follows: Education
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Bola Gbadebo

Bola Gbadebo is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Bola here.

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