Nashville public school students are back in class on Friday. With days left before the start of the school year, 16 teacher vacancies remain, according to Metro Nashville Public Schools human resources chief June Keel.
Keel says that’s the lowest number of last-minute vacancies the district has had in years. Over the course of the summer, the district has hired 410 new teachers, including 52 from Teach for America and 84 from the New Teacher Project. The district also has completed over-the-summer transfers of 931 teachers, Keel said.
“That has been a big job for us this year,” Keel said.
The big shifts came about as several sweeping changes happened at one time. About 100 teaching positions were cut as a result of budget reductions, and a reorganization of the MNPS central office moved more than 200 positions out of the district’s central office and into individual schools.
In addition, five schools were fresh-started as a result of troubled academic histories — meaning that all teachers at those schools had to reapply for their jobs. Five other schools were closed and two additional schools opened by a new rezoning plan, with staff at all those schools reassigned. And some adult high school education programs were closed to make room for two new adult high schools being established this fall.
Metro teachers are already back at work, but students start school with a half day on Friday. District officials emphasize that the half day is instructional time, and that attendance will be taken. Visit mnps.org for more information.