Recommended Practices to Address Staffing Concerns

Staffing photo

When educators utilize staff effectively and efficiently, magic things happen for students!  When we rely on old place and label bound staffing models very little authentic progress is achieved. Review the following staffing concerns expressed by many school leaders. For each category, we have provided a number of recommendations and tips to address this concern.

If your concern is a uniform, objective and effective staffing process…

  • Design a student-centered process for determining staffing needs.
  • Click here for an example process.
  • Provide training to all stakeholders to ensure consistent application across all schools.
  • Develop master schedule after the needs of special populations are determined.
  • Provide annual sessions for principals and key scheduling staff for a refresher regarding staffing processes and quality standards.
  • At least annually, verify that services provided to individual students are consistent with IEP decisions.

If your concern is shared ownership…

  • Discuss district and school expectations for shared responsibility for all students with all faculty in strong and explicit terms.
  • Click here for related faculty activities.
  • Consider changing the school vocabulary from general education teachers or special education teachers, ELL teachers to the generic term of ‘teacher’ or ‘educator’ for all.
  • The expectation for shared ownership for all students is explained to potential new faculty members and during teacher and administrator evaluations.
  • There are no separate wings or labels or signs designating special or separate programs or services.

To overcome the “Largest Staff Wins!” philosophy…

  • Discuss the myth that more staff results in higher achievement –improved instructional delivery is the key!
  • Ensure that all staffing decisions are based on student need – not adult preferences.
  • Ensure that the belief that additional staff is not based on current staff without the skills necessary to fulfill their roles effectively and efficiently.

If you need a stronger instructional focus…

  • Instructional and behavioral support needs are the determining factors for deciding when personal support is needed for each student.
  • Protected planning time is provided for each teaching pair and/or team to enable quality instructional lesson planning.
  • Professional development is provided to all instructional faculty on the basis of skill development needs. The training options are differentiated on the basis of teacher expertise and follow adult learning standards.
  • Principals and instructional specialists offer individualized coaching and support.

If your concern is the need for stronger HR services…

  • Teacher satisfaction and retention are priorities in our district.
  • Instructional and Human Resource department leads meet on a regular basis to review projections for staffing, best recruitment sources, and results of staff exit interview results.
  • A strong new teacher orientation program is in place to build a common sense of mission and commitment to quality services.
  • Teacher and administrator support needs are surveyed each year and proactive services are created to address concerns.

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