Anoka-Hennepin School District Faces Special Education Staffing Shortage
The state’s largest school district is making changes to its special education program because it doesn’t have enough teachers.
On Monday night, the Anoka Hennepin School Board decided to temporarily close one of its learning centers due to a shortage of special education teachers.
Anoka-Hennepin Schools Associate Superintendent Becky Brodeur has over 20 years of experience in the field of education. She tells her 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that finding a special education teacher is her biggest challenge.
“We used to get 200-300 applicants for a teaching position, but now we are lucky if we get two or three applicants,” says Brodeur. “These are positions that require specific training and skills.”
Due to a shortage of special education teachers, the school district temporarily closed the River Trail Learning Center in Byrndale, Anoka on Monday night and decided to move several children elsewhere this school year. Decided.
“Due to staffing shortages and concerns, we are very creative in finding solutions wherever possible to ensure that the district meets its mission of effectively educating and succeeding each student.” says Brodeur.
Currently, the district has approximately 250 job openings, and approximately one-third are for special education teaching positions.
“Yesterday we wanted to fill all open positions,” Brodur said. “If anyone is looking for a position, Anoka Hennepin is hiring.”
About 99% of the positions in the district are filled, but with classes starting in two weeks, the district has less time to find that 1%.