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Cincinnati Public recruiting more than 100 teachers even as it faces budget cuts

Zack Carreon
A CPS staff member speaks with a potential candidate at a summer job fair at Aiken High School Tuesday, June 11, 2024.

The 2023-24 school year ended just a few weeks ago, and for Cincinnati Public Schools, that means it's time to start recruiting employees for next year.

The school system held a job fair at Aiken High School Tuesday to get a head start on finding the right talent before those potential employees start looking elsewhere.

Julia Indalecio, senior director of HR and talent at CPS, says the start of summer is a critical time for hiring in the district since it has so many positions to fill before students return to the classroom in a few months.

RELATED: CPS updates policy to encourage stricter rules for student cellphone use

"Our teachers come back August 8th and school starts August 14th, so the clock is ticking," Indalecio told WVXU.

She says recruiting educators is always competitive, especially now as CPS has many openings across several departments.

Currently, CPS leaders are working to eliminate the district's multi-million dollar budget deficit before the start of the 2024-25 fiscal year — and they have some tough choices ahead. The Board of Education has already approved the elimination of several positions in recent weeks and there could be more layoffs on the way as CPS still has $9.8 million left to cut.

Still, Indalecio says the district isn't making cuts everywhere, and there are plenty of schools in need of additional staff.

"We have over a hundred teacher positions vacant right now, so we're really working hard to fill those," Indalecio said. "Substitute teachers, we're always hiring. We don't really have a quota for those because subs come and work as they want to, so we hire as many subs as we can."

RELATED: CPS Board approves reductions to assistant principal and manager positions

Two significant areas of need at CPS this year are math and science teachers, along with Spanish-speaking educators to assist the district's growing population of English language learner students.

Indalecio says those specific educators can be hard to find, so CPS is continuing to promote its hiring opportunities throughout the summer. Next Tuesday, CPS will hold another job fair at Shroder High School. It also plans to host "Walk-in Wednesday" hiring events at its central office every week until mid-August.

Zack Carreon is Education reporter for WVXU, covering local school districts and higher education in the Tri-State area.