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JPPSS Announces Talent Management Strategy to Recruit and Retain Top Teachers

In order to strengthen its teaching ranks, the Jefferson Parish Public School System (JPPSS) has developed a talent management strategy that focuses on recruiting, training, and retaining top teachers for the 2013-14 school year.

“Our teachers are one of the most important factors in ensuring that children receive an education that will prepare them for success,” said Superintendent James Meza, Jr. “By ensuring we have the very best teachers in the classroom, we can give our children the very best education.”

JPPSS anticipates more than 250 vacancies for the 2013-14 school year, or approximately 8 percent of the current number of teaching positions, based on projected retirements, separations, and general turnover. The number of projected vacancies is consistent with numbers from previous years. Approximately one-third of the current teacher workforce in JPPSS is eligible for retirement.

To ensure that JPPSS fills its vacancies with top quality teachers, the district plans to implement a comprehensive strategy that spans the areas of recruitment, selection, talent development, and retention.

To recruit top teacher candidates, including teachers in hard-to-staff subjects and bilingual teachers, JPPSS is building partnerships with a wide range of top universities and other professional organizations. The district is also proposing an accelerated timeline for interviewing and selecting top candidates. In previous years, the district extended offers to candidates late in the summer; under the proposed timeline, the district could make offers to candidates as early as April or May of this year.

The strategy also includes a new orientation program for new teachers that would begin as soon as candidates accept an offer with JPPSS, a mentoring program, and continuing professional development opportunities throughout the school year. The strategy proposes a “tiered” model of professional development and teacher support, with some training coming from the central office level and other tailored support coming from both the network level and the school level.

“All phases of the talent management strategy, from recruiting to providing ongoing support training, is critical to ensuring that we have an effective teacher in every single JPPSS classroom,” said Meza.

The JPPSS talent management strategy will be presented to the executive committee of the Jefferson Parish School Board for its consideration during its meeting on March 4, 2013.