Teachers converge in Cumberland Co. for job fair

August 5, 2008 5:27:33 PM PDT
Cumberland County is making a mad dash to fill some empty teaching positions just two weeks before school starts.

Applicants traveled from all over the country, looking for the same thing.

"I would just like to have a school district that's really good," teacher Melissa Werner said. "And I just heard a lot of great things about North Carolina and South Carolina schools."

A teacher from Oklahoma says North Carolina pays better. "Beyond that, I think that they do a lot of research with the North Carolina Standard Course of Study," Barbara Crisp said.

Cumberland County is just like every other school system in the county. Everyone needs teachers. There's a shortage of math, science and exceptional children teachers.

"I heard that Math teachers or teachers in general are needed, but as I look around today and see all these prospective teachers here, it's hard to believe there's a shortage," teacher Angela Harding said.

More school systems, including Cumberland County, are offering incentive packages for new teachers. Packages include signing bonuses, salary supplements and special treatment from realtors.

Joseph Locklear, who works in human resources, says realtors will sometimes provide reduced rates for monthly rentals, and some medical facilities provide reduced rates for medical exams.

New housing areas are popping up all over Cumberland County and the area's population is expected to boom once the BRAC plan is completed.

"Well, we're monitoring the numbers that we're receiving from Bragg and we're anticipating as well as we can," Locklear said. "But sometimes its difficult to understand until warm bodies actually show up at the door."


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