State educators hold teacher job fair

Commonwealth’s need for good well-rounded teachers has never been more vital
Administrators (from left): Dr. Bernice Cobbs, principal, Benjamin Franklin Middle School; Anitra Holland, principal, Lee M. Waid Elementary; Rocky Mount; Kim Richardson, Human Resources Assistant, Franklin Co. School Board and Dana Kelley, principal, Dudley Elementary, all Franklin Co. District administrators.

By Shawn Nowlin

On Saturday, January 26, the Western Virginia Public Education Consortium (WVPEC) held its annual teacher recruitment job fair at the Salem Civic Center. School personnel from over 20 school districts in Virginia, including Craig County, Roanoke County and Salem City, were present to answer questions, go over resumes and meet prospective teacher applicants.

Although not necessary, participants were encouraged to apply online before they arrived.

“We were very pleased with the turnout. We are looking for some great teachers and we met a lot of good potential candidates,” said Jodylee Edsall, a Roanoke County Public Schools employee since 1980. “There was a great mix of upcoming May college graduates to career switchers that want to enter the teaching field.”

As the Roanoke County Public Schools Supervisor of Human Resources, Edsall’s responsibilities include overseeing the implementation of personnel policies and procedures, hiring and staffing of support and instructional personnel, facilitating transfers of support personnel and overseeing employee benefits.

Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) are working diligently to address the critical teaching shortage through a variety of initiatives focused on encouraging current students to become educators and educating adults on routes to teaching licensure.

“Saturday’s event was well organized and provided both applicants and recruiters the opportunity to talk about teaching opportunities in Western Virginia School divisions,” said Annie Whitaker, MCPS human resources director, “Montgomery County Public Schools are already accepting applications and anticipates needs in many areas with a focus on special education, mathematics and elementary education.”

Several Salem City School positions also need to be filled. Potential applicants are encouraged to check Salem City Schools’ website ( for more information.

“Salem School Division staff members attend multiple job fairs across the state each year to meet prospective teacher candidates in order to fill vacancies created by retirements or resignations,” says Director of Human Resources Kirstine Barber. “The WVPEC job fair is one of the most widely attended job fairs in the region, and we always look forward to this fair and the time we spend with teacher candidates.”