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Broward Public Schools seek staff as new school year approaches

Broward County, Florida – As the new school year approaches, Broward Public Schools is looking to fill a variety of vacant positions, spanning from teachers to bus drivers, in less than a fortnight.

The district, which holds the distinction of being the second largest in the state and the sixth largest in the nation, is home to more than 250,000 students across 240 schools and 87 charter schools.

In anticipation of the impending academic year, Dr. Peter Licata, the newly installed Superintendent of Broward Public Schools, acknowledged the considerable challenge that lies ahead.

“We currently have over 200 open teacher positions, a number that fluctuates throughout the day. Our human resources team is working around the clock to expedite the hiring process. However, as we are all aware, some individuals choose to switch jobs at the last minute. We want those who are vacationing here to realize that while the weather might be a bit warm now, it will cool down as the month progresses. We encourage them to seize the opportunity and join our team – Broward is an excellent place to be, and we would be thrilled to welcome you on board,” said Dr. Licata.

The Superintendent expressed that the current vacancies aren’t limited to teaching staff, but extend to bus drivers, cafeteria personnel, and various other non-instructional roles.

“We require everyone’s involvement here. The school board has entrusted me with ensuring that our staff is the highest paid in all positions. That’s been our focal point. We anticipate coming very close to achieving this objective this year, and we’re certain of accomplishing it the next. We eagerly look forward to meeting the community’s needs and keeping pace with the cost of living,” he added.

Allan Zeman, a member of the school board, has proposed a salary increment for teachers to six figures, an idea which Dr. Licata stated he would explore.

“We are getting closer to achieving this goal. We have full support from our school board. I believe the issue isn’t a shortage of teachers, but rather a decrease in those who continue to teach. There are a lot of alternative career paths that may offer better compensation. However, it’s important to remember that the emotional rewards of teaching are significant as well,” he said.

In case they are unable to fill all of the open positions, Dr. Licata stated that they are devising contingency plans.

“In terms of teaching positions, we will ensure all classes are covered. Our teachers are deeply committed to their students and would not want a class to be left unattended. We intend to have students meet their teachers on the first day, and we will see to it that this happens. We have an efficient substitute system and a contractor who assists us with that,” he stated.

Dr. Licata also addressed the shortage of bus drivers, “We will ensure that bus routes are possibly consolidated or they are double backed. We are aiming to maintain the stellar performance of our bus routes, as it has been for the past five or six years, on the first day of the new term,” he assured.

Regarding the recently implemented state standard on teaching Black history, Dr. Licata confirmed that it will be discussed. He has scheduled a meeting on Thursday morning with state officials and other superintendents from across the state.

“We aim to cover all aspects of the curriculum that are included in the exams. We believe we have a significant role in shaping this curriculum and it’s important for us to ensure our voice is heard in Tallahassee. We want our teaching material to be age-appropriate, accurate, and truthful. We are committed to maintaining these standards,” he concluded.

Lowell Bowen

From the time he was 8 years old Lowell knew he wanted to be on TV. Well, as people say one thing leads to another, that's how Lowell started his career in the news industry. Lowell has been part of The South Florida Daily since the very beginning.

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