Hundreds expected at Houston County teacher job fair Saturday

jmink@macon.comFebruary 28, 2013 

WARNER ROBINS -- On Saturday, officials expect hundreds of people to pack Veterans High School in Kathleen.

It’s not an open house or an athletic event but rather a time for teachers to scope out job opportunities in Houston County. The event, which will be from 9 a.m. to noon, draws about 600 to 700 applicants each year, said Mark Scott, assistant superintendent for human resources at Houston County schools.

This year, school officials have fielded phone calls from teachers in other states who want to teach in Houston County. For now, officials expect about 100 vacancies for next school year, though not all retirements and resignations have been processed, Scott said.

The teacher fair gives those applicants a chance to learn more about the schools, chat with current employees and, in many cases, be interviewed on site, Scott said.

It also is a plus for the school system. The fair gives administrators a chance to meet an array of candidates, a task that otherwise would be difficult, Scott said.

For example, when there is a teacher vacancy at an elementary school, that position can garner as many as 300 applications. Ordinarily, it would be impossible for a principal to interview that many candidates, but a teacher fair allows school leaders to meet a bigger selection of future teachers, Scott said.

“We want to be able to get a feel for the people rather than just in a formal job interview,” he said.

The teacher recruitment fair also gives administrators a bigger pool of candidates for positions that are typically tough to fill. Those jobs include advanced high school math and science educators, such as chemistry and physics teachers, Scott said.

Teachers should bring their résumés to the job fair. The event will begin with a meeting in the school auditorium. Then, teachers will be able to visit representatives from different schools.

“It would be hard for us to set up (formal) interviews with 600 or 700 people,” Scott said. “This format, it’s much easier.”

To contact writer Jenna Mink, call 256-9751.

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