About 20 teaching positions still need to be filled in NashuaBy KIMBERLY HOUGHTON
Union Leader Correspondent
August 09. 2018 11:10PM
NASHUA — With dozens of new city teachers set to attend orientation later this month, about 20 more teaching positions still need to be filled.
“We had 81 openings in total,” Dana O’Gara, human resources director for the Nashua School District, said this week.
About half of those openings were related to existing Nashua teachers seeking a transfer to either a different position or a different school within the district, said O’Gara.
In addition, the Nashua Board of Education is expected to approve the hiring of about 23 teachers on Monday.
“So now we are down to about 20 vacancies, which is pretty good,” said O’Gara. “We are trying to get everybody filled. We are still getting resignations … there is a lot of changeover in the summer.”
Special education teaching positions and science teachers are traditionally the most difficult roles to fill, she said.
One of the district’s physical science teachers just resigned, which O’Gara said will be a challenging position to fill this late in the summer.
“But we will have teachers in all of our classrooms,” she stressed, explaining a substitute may be necessary to temporarily fill a position until the school board approves a new hire.
According to O’Gara, it is typical for the district to hire new or transfer from within the district a total of about 80 teachers each summer.
“When you think about the teacher bargaining group, we have over 1,010 bodies. We are right where we have been in the past,” she said in regards to open teaching slots.
The new teachers will participate in a three-day orientation program starting Aug. 22 at Nashua High School North.
As far as the 20 teaching positions that still need to filled, O’Gara said there are a variety of teaching roles, including specialists, grade-level teachers, special education teachers and continuing subs.
“We are looking to hire teachers invested in public education to drive student achievement,” states the district’s website, which includes a full listing of vacant teaching positions.
“We need teachers all across the board,” echoed O’Gara.
Earlier this year, in an effort to attract and retain teachers in Nashua, school and city officials approved a new contract providing teachers with a combined 10 percent salary increase by the end of the four-year bargaining agreement.
Under the new contract, about 988 city teachers will have base salary increases of 3.6 percent in 2018, 3.0 percent in 2019, 1.8 percent in 2020 and 2.3 percent in 2021.