Philadelphia district struggles to fill teacher vacancies

Philadelphia district struggles to fill teacher vacancies

System has more than 160 unfilled teaching positions

The Philadelphia School District is having trouble finding and retaining enough teachers this year.

Philly.com reports that as of last weeks, the district had 162 teaching vacancies - up from 107 at this point last year, and 39 in January 2014.

The vacancies represent about 2 percent of the more than 8,000 teaching positions in the 218-school system. Beyond the statistics, the vacancies rob students of continuity and, in some cases, high-quality instruction for months at a time.

Philadelphia has hired 1,050 new teachers since July. But it has also seen considerable turnover. Candidates may be turned off by the district's ongoing contract dispute and financial crisis.

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