RCSD superintendent lays out plans to address staffing shortage

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Like so many other school districts across the nation, the Rochester City School District is desperately looking to hire people to fill nearly two-dozen open jobs.

News10NBC talked to the Superintendent about her new "Each One, Reach One" Initiative, and how a group of community partners is stepping up to help get some new hires.

Lesli Myers-Small, Ph.D. told us district leaders are trying to think outside the box when it comes to recruitment. She’s turned to one group in particular for a bit of divine help.

The superintendent is reaching out to the city’s faith community hoping its leaders will help recruit straight from their churches.

"Having a conversation, letting them know what the struggles are. What the openings are, and the availabilities, and just by having word of mouth, go and connect with folks who they might be interested in working and serving our scholars," Myers-Small said.

One church leader we talked to discussed how he can help potential employees move through the steps of getting hired.

"So if they don’t have a resume we’ll provide services so the people can put a resume together," said Pastor Fred Johnson of the First Genesis Baptist Church. "People need clothing to be able to prepare for the interview, we’ll do that as well, and so that’s where the church comes in, and become a critical help."

As is the case in most school systems, there’s a big need for more school bus drivers. The district is also looking to fill positions in their food services department, clerical, custodial, and office of school security. Each position pays $15, or better. Some incentives included as well.

"Well we have an internal incentive that if we have our own staff refer there, there are bonuses there, but it’s primarily with our bus drivers," Myers-Small said.

The shortage of bus drivers is not only a problem here. Schools in both the Brockport and Clyde Savannah schools systems were forced to close on Thursday due to this very problem.