LONGVIEW, TEXAS (KETK) — Pine Tree, Longview, Gilmer and Kilgore Independent School Districts are among a list of 18 East Texas schools who have seen an increase in the hiring of 'freshman' or first-time teachers since 2009.
Pine Tree Human Resource Director Suzanne Shackelford, says while the number of first time teachers they hire is on the rise, Pine Tree looks for the best teaching candidates of all ages,
"When we hire anybody, it's what's best for our school and what's best for our students," says Shackelford. "So if they're a good fit for our school, you bet we'll hire them."
Shackelford also says first-time teachers bring a fresh outlook to the school,
"They come in and bring these great and new ideas, and I think that's a great benefit for our schools."
She says the freshman teachers are graduating with an important knowledge of technical skills; something that veteran teachers may not have.
"A teacher who's been teaching awhile that has the great educational skills and discipline skills," says Shackelford. "And if you have the things that you need in the classroom and you pair them with this new teacher that comes in with this new technology, it's a great mix."
Jatinder Jhass, a first-year teacher at Pine Tree Intermediate, agrees with Shackelford saying teamwork and support have made her first year go smoothly,
"Getting ideas from them, sharing ideas, putting them together, it really helps me a lot," says Jhass. "I'm really enjoying being a teacher, it's been awesome."