Process returns many to preferred subjects with improved notice

As teachers packed up their classes Friday, they closed out the school year with a better idea of what they will be teaching in the fall.

For many, they will be returning to grade-evel positions they have dedicated most of their careers to building curriculum and programs for in their subject areas of expertise.

Others will be transitioning into new assignments they requested within the same building or in another school.

Another group of teachers, counselors and licensed staff will be shifting into positions they didn’t anticipate or necessarily want.

In total, 380 licensed employees — which include classroom teachers, speech pathologists, counselors and psychologists, among others — will move into positions district leaders say are a better fit for the 2013-14 school year.

“We are hearing from the principals, that for the most part, their staffs were satisfied with their assignments and happy to receive the news before they left for summer break,” said Sue Robertson, chief human resources officer for the district. “But there are still those who are not pleased with their assignments. Those are the ones who tug at my heart.

“There is still an opportunity for them to transfer into positions they want — the staffing process is not final. But while we would like everybody to be satisfied when all is said and done, that is not always possible. We’ll do our best in the weeks ahead.”

The shift in assignments marked an improvement over the 2012 staffing process, where 363 employees were transferred as a result of the district being forced to eliminate 344 positions due to drastic budget cuts. Many shifted into new subject areas and grade levels they had never taught before and learned about their assignments later in the summer, with little time to prepare or consult with colleagues before students filed into class.

“Throughout the year, we have been in ongoing discussions with the district about the transfer process,” said Karen Hoffman, president of the Beaverton Education Association. “We feel this is a vastly improved process that honors a teacher’s experience and talents.”

Staffing schools is a fluid process that begins months in advance of the end of the year.

In February, principals asked teachers for their preferences for the coming year. Principals then worked with the Human Resources Department to identify their school’s staffing needs based on enrollment numbers and student forecasting, Robertson said.

It was then her team’s job to match teacher preferences with each school’s staffing needs. Principals had a second chance to review and weigh in on the matches before informing their staff.

The goal was to move teachers into the best possible placements to match thier area of expertise and enable them to better serve students, Robertson added.

“Our students deserve the very best teacher in every class,” added Superintendent Jeff Rose. “Our teachers do incredible work every day, and we need to get the best match possible so our students can excel.”

With the passage of the local-option levy in May, which enabled the district to bring back 151 teaching positions, schools last week began posting about 90 open jobs, both full- and part-time, that all current probationary and contracted teachers may apply for, including those who were not placed in their preferred position.

As job openings are filled, others will be freed up, Robertson said.

If a position is not filled internally by July 11, a teacher will be recalled from last year’s recall list of about 80 laid-off teachers and a list of 71 temporary employees who were laid off at the end of this year.

Contract Publishing

Go to top
Template by JoomlaShine