Schools look to fill vacant spots

The school system started the new school year Tuesday with about 25 classroom teacher spots vacant but had filled all but a few positions as of Friday, said Bruce Leininger, human resources director.

At the end of July, the district declared a critical shortage of teachers with about 40 positions open in K-12 classrooms. The majority were in middle and high school math and special education.

When students returned to school Tuesday, Superintendent Pat Cooper said the district had about 20 to 25 openings — though selections for the spots had been made and final paperwork, such as results of background checks, were pending for the teachers to start work.

There were still a handful of unfilled teacher positions as of Friday. These included a family and consumer science teacher at the Career Center, an itinerant teacher to work with talented students interested in theatre, an itinerant gifted education teacher and a gifted education teacher at Woodvale Elementary.

The school system is also seeking a mild/moderate special education teacher to work with students at the Lafayette Juvenile Detention Center.

Other instructional-related positions still vacant include a math content instructional coach, an instructional strategist at Milton Elementary/Middle and two counselors at Paul Breaux Middle School.

As of Friday, applications were still being accepted for one administrative position — an assistant principal to work at both Duson Elementary and L. Leo Judice Elementary.

The district hired about 250 new teachers this summer, according to information provided by Leininger.