Hays CISD aims to pipeline its future teachers
In an effort to encourage more teachers within its district, the Hays CISD Board of Trustees approved a $137,575 payment toward implementing the Texas Teachers of Tomorrow: Lighthouse Teacher Certification and Preparation Program.
“This reflects our intentional efforts to build and support our staff,” Chief Human Resources Officer Fernando Medina said. “Research has shown that people are leaving because of pay, disrespect or lack of opportunity for career advancement [in the education field]. This program addresses those issues.”
The Lighthouse Teacher Certification and Preparation Program is a customized “grow your own’’ approach to support staffing needs, according to agenda documents. Exclusively offered to Hays CISD and a few other school districts, the program is an “unconventional” approach toward incentivizing students to pursue a career in education.
Hays CISD currently employs 17 alternative certification candidates through Texas Teachers, according to the district. With additionally provided test preparation, training, development and support, Hays CISD foresees this number to increase by 20.
“If you don’t create your own solutions, you’re just going to get what you’ve always received,” Superintendent Eric Wright said about staff vacancies. “I believe we’ll be able to stop the bleeding and eventually fill all our positions.”
The Texas Teachers of Tomorrow program has about a 92% pass rate, Wright said. The district anticipates having a 100% fill rate for teaching positions on the first day of the 2022-2023 school year.
“I think it’s a must do,” Trustee Will McManus said. “I don’t know where we’re going to find applicants otherwise.”