2001-10-04 / Top Stories

Caribbean Educators Fill District 18 Teacher Vacancies

Caribbean Educators Fill District 18 Teacher Vacancies

Community Superintendent Paula LeCompte Speed (center), surrounded by principals and supervisors, greets newly hired School District 18 Caribbean teachers at a reception held to welcome them last month.Community Superintendent Paula LeCompte Speed (center), surrounded by principals and supervisors, greets newly hired School District 18 Caribbean teachers at a reception held to welcome them last month.

At the start of 2001-2002 school year, Community School District 18 held a welcoming reception for more than 60 new teachers who are filling positions in the district’s 22 elementary and intermediate schools.

Newly arrived from the islands of Jamaica, Trinidad and Barbados, the educators met with Superintendent Paula LeCompte Speed, principals, school board members and other district officials at the "Get Acquainted Reception," at the district office last month.

At the event, the teachers had the opportunity to meet with the superintendent and discuss their experiences in their appointed schools with both principals and colleagues.

"We’re glad you are here and hope you stay with us for quite some time," Speed told the group. "The challenges will be great but we will be here to support you throughout your career."

Last summer, the Board of Education recruited qualified teachers from various countries in response to the growing citywide teacher shortage. District 18 was asked to participate in the recruitment of Caribbean teachers due to the large number of Caribbean students in the Canarsie and East Flatbush schools.

Although the recruitment process was funded through the Board of Education, the district participated in choosing its teachers. Last spring, two district principals visited the educators in their homelands to conduct interviews and to provide information about the district’s schools.

The teachers arrived in New York City during the summer and received assistance from the Board of Education in finding housing and getting settled. The new recruits were trained extensively during the summer. Furthermore, professional development will be provided by the district throughout the school year.

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