HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK) – With labor shortages prevalent across the country, one area of work that particularly took a hit was in the education field.  

After a year of hosting job fairs and multiple job postings to attempt to fill teaching and substitute positions, the Cabell County school district says they’re almost back on track.

Where is Cabell County with the teacher shortage?

“We’ve hired 127 professional teaching substitutes just during this school year. Many of those are 4-year degree employees that really didn’t take the traditional route to teaching, they didn’t go through the teaching college of education and that background. So, they really have a background in industry somewhere and they have come out and helped us in our classrooms and they’re substituting for us on a regular basis,” says Tim Hardesty, the Deputy Superintendent of District Operations and Support Division for the Cabell County School District.

He says with the new hires, the county is now experiencing classroom stabilization and fewer absences. Still, Hardesty says the problem isn’t completely solved as they expect a few retirements near the end of this school year.

He also says he hopes the effects of the “Great Resignation” is an issue of the past, because right now the county has a need for teachers in every area “across the board.”

Where is the need?

“As far as what specific needs we have, there’s always a need for math, there’s always a need for sciences and special education teachers,” says Hardesty.

He says now the school district is diving into the community to ensure this issue doesn’t happen again.

Right now, they’re continuing to advertise and they’re working with the state and Marshall University to grab the attention of students as early as high school to grow interest in the teaching profession.