Miami-Dade to start school year with more than 200 teacher vacancies
Miami-Dade students head back to school Wednesday as the school district scrambles to fill a shortage of 224 teachers, district spokesperson Elmo Lugo tells Axios.
- In Miami-Dade, the greatest need is in special education and math, Lugo says.
- In Florida, the state Department of Education announced it would issue a temporary teaching certificate to military veterans "who have not yet earned their bachelor's degree" after a new law took effect last month.
Of note: Miami-Dade tells Axios the district hasn’t yet seen applicants from the program to recruit veterans as teachers, which has been promoted by Gov. Ron DeSantis.
- The district is holding hiring events to try to fill the vacancies, CBS reports.
What they're saying: Karla Hernández-Mats, president of the United Teachers of Dade union, blames Republicans for issues driving teachers away, such as gun proliferation, book banning, painting teachers as "groomers" and the raiding of a state fund for affordable housing.
- "We have extremist legislators in Tallahassee and Gov. DeSantis, who's just doing all these things that are really impacting in a negative way our public schools," she tells Axios.
- Military experience and teaching skills are not interchangeable, she said: “Here are the hardworking individuals who care so much about children, have gotten their bachelor's and master's and specialist degrees – and now you're saying that all the hard work and education that they put in doesn't matter.”
Yes, but: The union has endorsed two Republicans and two Democrats for the nonpartisan school board primary races now underway, she said.
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