School districts noticing a lack of subs

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – Staffing Shortages in Northwest Arkansas could be affecting your child’s quality of learning. 

Districts across the area are reporting a lack of substitutes and bus drivers, causing some teachers to have to double up on classrooms. 

The Director of Human Resources for Fayetteville Public Schools says he’s worked for the district since 2000, and this staffing shortage is the worst he’s ever seen. 

Rev. Clint Schnekloth works for Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Fayetteville, but due to the local staffing shortages in Fayetteville Public School, he feels it is his duty to step up in any way he can. So he applied to be a substitute teacher.

“This seems to be one of the big presenting needs now going into this stage of the pandemic,” says Schnekloth. 

The Director of Human Resources for Fayetteville Public Schools says the district is in need of substitutes and bus drivers.  

“It has been a significant issue. If thirty people came and applied to be a substitute teacher tomorrow we would hire all of those thirty; we need them,” says Greg Mones. 

He says on an average day, Fayetteville public schools need one hundred subs; it’s able to cover 85% of the classrooms, I asked what is done about the other 15%. 

“Maybe we pull a teaching aid from another classroom, but that just leaves that classroom without a teaching aid,” says Mones. 

Schnekloth says as a concerned parent, he worries about the effect a limited staff will have on the kids. So he’s calling on other Northwest Arkansans to also step up. 

“I think that this is one of those instances where people should consider doing this. You know, if you have the flexibility, even if you can only get away periodically, they should try it’s a good service to the community,” says Schnekloth. 

Fayetteville Public Schools tells me an extensive background check is done on anyone looking to apply, but the minimum requirement for a substitute or bus driver position is a high school diploma. 

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