BRIGHTON, Colo. (KDVR) — The 27J School District in and around Brighton is in desperate need of employees.
“Teachers are getting stretched thin and so are administrators are covering those classrooms,” Michael Clow, then Chief Resource Officer of 27J Schools said.
The shortage has caused many issues for students, parents and staff. Parents told FOX31 and Channel 2 they are worried the lack of staff is impacting their kids’ education.
“I think the kids feel the impact. My kid has moved to a class that’s not his class,” Noah Seis, a dad of kids in 27J said.
The district said right now they are looking to fill nearly 100 positions. They need 25 bus drivers, 15 paraprofessionals, 40 to 50 substitute teachers and at least 20 lunchroom staff.
“Were the third lowest funded district in the state of Colorado,” Clow said.
Clow said he doesn’t know why they are facing such a staff shortage but parents blame the mask mandate and salaries.
“You have a bus full of children, irreplaceable cargo but they want you to mandate the mask and how do you do that hie navigating the road,” Cindy Shafer, mom and former 27J bus driver said.
If the District can’t fill those positions they may have to:
- Severely reduce or eliminate bussing for days or weeks.
- Schools may have to return to remote learning for days or weeks each month.
- Schools may have to suspend breakfast and lunch services.
27J has 23 traditional schools; 6 charter schools and more than 20,000 students enrolled.
In the past year alone they’ve grown by 1,158 additional students.
The district lost 10 drivers this year, but were already understaffed. They moved to four day a week school weeks a few years ago to help recruit staffing.
If you’re interested in what opportunities are available, you can visit the website.