Arlington hires California teachers

District's recruiting trip leads to agreements with five

ARLINGTON – Five new bilingual and English as a second language teachers will be moving from California as a result of the school district’s recruiting trip this week, officials announced yesterday.

“We do appear to have five excellent people and there’s a potential to talk to many more,” Superintendent Mac Bernd said.

The five who have signed letters of commitment include one person with a doctorate and one with a master’s degree in English as a second language, said Charlene Robertson, the school district’s spokeswoman.

Robertson said she did not yet know the sex or ethnic background of those hired.

Three additional candidates are under consideration, but the district personnel department must make sure their certification meets Texas requirements, Robertson said.

Robertson said the personnel department also received faxes from teachers in California who heard about the recruitment but could not make the scheduled interviews.

On June 4, Superintendent Mac Bernd announced his intention to send school district personnel to California to recruit teachers after that state voted to virtually eliminate bilingual education.

About 1,760 of Arlington’s 54,900 students are bilingual students and another 3,635 are enrolled in the English as a second language program. The district anticipates needing an additional 20 bilingual teachers and nearly 25 ESL teachers for the next school year.

Proposed stipends to assist in the recruitment of bilingual and ESL teachers, as well as teachers in other hard-to-recruit specializations, did not make a prioritized list of budget increases compiled by a joint meeting of the Districtwide Decision-Making Committee and the Citizen’s Budget Review Committee. Several other school districts in the area offer such stipends.

Representing the district in California earlier this week were: Anita Buttram, executive director for personnel; Juli Mayfield, director of secondary personnel; Marilyn Evans, director of elementary personnel; Gilda Evans, bilingual/ESL coordinator; Cynthia Bean, Hutcheson Junior High School principal; and Celina Kilgore, Thornton Elementary School assistant principal.

Robertson said expenses for the trip, including advertisements in California newspapers, are estimated to be close to $ 10,000.

Jennifer Autrey, (817) 548-5476

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