New Orleans needs teachers. The new post-Katrina charters are attracting young idealists, but the state-run system is having trouble, reports MSNBC.
The school system in New Orleans was in desperate condition even before Hurricane Katrina struck 17 months ago, with crumbling buildings, low test scores and high dropout rates.
After the storm, some of the worst of the worst public schools were put under state control, and those are the ones finding it particularly hard to attract teachers. The 19 schools in the state-run Recovery School District have 8,580 students and about 540 teachers, or about 50 fewer than they need. About 300 students who want to enroll have been put on a waiting list until another school opens.
Half of those hired to teach have failed a test of basic skills, notes The Ed Wonks. A third are uncertified.
NCLBlog points out a recruitment ad that says certified teachers will be directed to charter schools, uncertified teachers to state-run schools. Apparently, the charters are seen as better places to teach and can afford to be picky about who they hire.