Springfield Public Schools recruiting in Puerto Rico to increase staff diversity

According to Superintendent Warwick, the goal of the program is to hire candidates that represent the student body here in Springfield.
Published: Mar. 7, 2023 at 8:40 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 7, 2023 at 10:14 PM EST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Tuesday marked the second day of a months-long effort from Springfield Public Schools to hire new teachers.

This week, the school district is looking beyond the Bay State for potential candidates. The district returned to Puerto Rico as they look to hire hundreds of teachers ahead of the upcoming school year.

“We have been very aggressive trying to recruit new staff to Springfield,” said Springfield Public Schools Superintendent Dan Warwick. “Recruiting and retaining staff is probably our number one priority, and we’ve also worked very hard on diversity.”

Part of those diversity efforts include a week-long job fair in Puerto Rico in an effort to recruit new staff members. Superintendent Warwick told us that the district is looking to fill hundreds of positions before the upcoming school year.

“We typically hire hundreds of new staff every year,” he said. “We have 5,000 employees in the Springfield Public Schools alone, so we are replenishing staff every year.”

Warwick told us that the goal of the program is to hire candidates that represent the student body here in Springfield.

“68% of the kids in the school system are Hispanic, so we’ve tried really hard, we’ve worked really hard to diversify our staff, to get more Hispanic staff,” he said.

This is not the first time the Springfield school district has looked beyond the Bay State for staff members. Superintendent Warwick said that the district also holds job fairs at historically black universities.

“We’ve been going down to Puerto Rico for years,” he told us. “We also go to historically black colleges and universities in the South and recruit there, as well. Again, with the eye towards bringing in staff that is reflective of our students.”

Warwick added that there has always been a strong connection between Puerto Rico and the city of Springfield.

The district has upcoming recruitment events a little closer to home, including a couple right here in Springfield in the coming months. If you are interested in attending, you can find those dates and times HERE.