ORANGEBURG COUNTY, S.C. — The Orangeburg County School District has made progress in filling teacher vacancies. At the start of the 2022-2023 school year, the district had 162 vacancies, it has filled 146.
Out of the 146 positions filled, fourteen were filled by retired educators.
“I wanna say thank you and your team so very much for tapping into the retirement population and trying to meet them where they wanna be met so they would be willing to come and work with the children," said school member Betty Pelzer.
This was made possible through the district's Recharged program that focuses on hiring retired educators. The district has filled all of its vacancies for its elementary-level core classes. There are 18.5 teacher vacancies remaining.
“I rest a little bit better at nighttime knowing I got a mountain of 18.5 and it’s not a mountain of it's not hundreds, it's not 70 to fill," said superintendent Dr. Shawn Foster.
Recruitment continues in the district through recruitment fairs visiting colleges and using surveys. The district has also commissioned a retention representative that meets with the district once a month.
“We’ve had one meeting. From that meeting we come up with recruitment and retention strategies as we work because I am one person so I need help trying to convey through the 31 schools we have in the district," said coordinator of recruitment and retention Dr. Sharon Hampton.