NEW YORK CITY — With the first day of in-person learning for elementary, middle and high school students just days away, thousands of teachers are still needed, according to the NYC’s school teachers union Friday.
“Now we have to see if we could meet this challenge of everyone getting hired,” said Michael Mulgrew, UFT President. “We have to have a teacher in every classroom and for every remote classroom.”
About 500 elementary school buildings as of Friday have been cleared to reopen on Tuesday with the teachers union saying they have everything from PPE, to rapid testing protocols in place, to teachers.
But, hundreds of middle and high schools expected to reopen October 1 are still being studied, and are facing a teacher shortage. The city is at least 2,000 teachers short.
“The middle schools and high schools are a whole different need,” said Mulgrew. “It’s a challenge, it’s a really big challenge.”
UFT president Michael Mulgrew told PIX11, the teachers union and principal’s union are working with the city on getting educators in classrooms, a big undertaking, since the start of in-person learning for elementary, middle and high school students are just days away.
“If they can’t get a hire done DOE is facilitating a teacher from the substitute pool or from redeployment into their position that’s open.”
Additionally, since DOE didn’t do any teacher-hires this year, newly certified teachers are going to be able to fill the vacant seats.
Principals have been given the budget to do so.
“We”re hiring a lot of the students who graduated from college who were not able to get a job,” added Mulgrew.
“For Tuesday and Thursday, the chancellor has told every single person who works for DOE, if you have a teacher's certificate, there’s a possibility you could be sent to a school.”
The mayor Friday morning was adamant there will be no more school delays and both city and school leaders maintain as long as the city’s COVID-19 infection rate remains low, kids will be back in classrooms next week.
But, it won’t be as easy as ABC’s and 123’s if there aren’t enough teachers.
“This is a really tough task, this is not simple — the thing is if we don’t have a teacher for every school, we can’t open the school.”
Mulgrew encouraged certified teachers to step forward.
“NYC is hiring teachers, come on in.”
If you are a certified teacher and want to apply to become a NYC teacher, click here.