SCCPSS holds luncheon to celebrate teachers, counselors

Published: Feb. 20, 2023 at 3:43 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 20, 2023 at 4:57 PM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Like many districts in the nation, the Savannah Chatham County Public School System is fighting the battle to hold onto teachers.

To help get it done, district leaders say they are making an effort to let the teachers that show up everyday know their appreciated.

“Prior to the pandemic there was burnout, but now there’s certainly burnout.”

Savannah Chatham public schools started off this school year with 75 teacher vacancies. Now, there are 120 open teacher positions.

Woodville-Tompkins High teacher of 30 years Bernard Clarke got a break from his usual load by coming out to an appreciation for teachers, Career Technology staff and school counselors. While he’s happy with his position, he says there are several reasons teachers are experiencing burnout everyday.

“There are still a lot of things we’re trying to come to grips with. Some students are still not comfortable in schools. Some parents are not comfortable kids coming. We’re still working through a lot of things and that in itself will burn you out,” said Clarke.

One step their taking to boost morale and retain faculty in schools is having wellness days with a packed schedule of events and free goodies.

The day was filled with workshops and food trucks celebrating employees is apart of the district’s “The Way Forward” strategic plan to create a more positive culture in schools.

“Last year we did it for the first time and it was a huge success. And when we did the survey, we had several staff members that were asking for more. It also boost morale to let them know that we care enough to take the opportunity to serve them,” said Dr. Angie Lewis, the college and career readiness director with SCCPSS.

“Teachers must be reassured that they are first of all needed but second of all appreciated.”

A much needed day away from the classroom.