in Houston, Texas
Houston school system offers bonuses to lure teachers from California, Michigan, Florida, Louisiana
Wednesday, Mar 24, 2010, 05:48PM CST
By Lynn Walsh

Houston ISD is looking outside Texas for new teachers and offering cash bonuses to get them here.

The district is looking specifically for teachers who specialize in any of three areas: bilingual education, secondary math and secondary science. These are areas in which, according to an HISD press release, the district has critical shortages.

HISD recruiters will be in Los Angeles, Calif., Thursday. In the coming months the HISD recruiters will head to Louisiana, Michigan and Florida to look for more qualified teachers.

Teachers have an incentive to move to Houston and teach in HISD thanks to new teacher recruitment and retention incentives approved at the March school board meeting.

If a teacher transfers to HISD and teaches in one of the three critical areas the bonus is $6,000; a special education teacher who transfers to HISD receives a $5,000 bonus. On top of those bonuses, a teacher relocating for the position can also receive a $1,500 relocation check.

The district has offered teacher recruitment incentives since 2001, but this is the first time HISD has offered relocation incentives. According to the proposal passed by the school board, the total amount of bonus and relocation incentives paid cannot exceed $1.7 million.

Due to education budget shortfalls in the Golden State, the California Teachers Association says more than 21,000 California teachers have received letters informing them that they will not have a job for the 2010-11 school year.

Recruiters from HISD will be in California on Thursday to recruit from close to 5,000 of the teachers who have received pink slips. 

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