New hiring process should become JC staple


Illustration by Caroline Barwick

With applicants coming in to teach a sample lesson, the students act as the audience and sometimes even the judges. After the lesson, the students give their critique of the teacher and the administration takes it into account in the hiring process.

Earlier this year, German teacher Richard Moller announced he will not be returning to teach next year. Now commences the hunt for a teacher to head German for next year. While there is the much more conventional form of replacing a teacher with plainly interviewing applicants, the administration has chosen to revert back to an old, yet effective, tactic for filling this position with a teacher who will make a long term commitment to JC.

While interviewing may be able to learn more about a candidate’s personality, nothing can tell you more than how an applicant fits into the setting they will be in. With this, the administration has given primary applicants the opportunity to connect with students for a 55-minute mod, teaching a sample lesson to the current German 3 class.

This is a great way to find a new teacher who will not just be here for a year or two, but will be good enough to properly educate students for years and years to come. Hopefully maybe becoming a staple teacher for the community that alumni will praise even years after they graduate. We have had such a problem with finding teachers in certain departments that are good enough to stay, such as JC past with many physics teachers. Unfortunately this method, according to Principal Madelyn Ball, has been and only will be used for World Languages for the near future.

Using this form of interviewing for each teacher applicant is a huge commitment, although it’s necessary in finding the right fit for the department. Finding the right teacher would take a large amount of time. However, it would be worth it if you need to search for a new teacher within the next few years.

With this selection process, both students and administration get a look into the teacher’s tendencies. It’s important that the students that will have this teacher in the coming years get a look at each candidate and even have a voice about who they prefer to teach them. I cannot tell you how many times, not only in high school, there has been a new hire that simply doesn’t have a good teaching method or fails to connect with students in the classroom.

Whether or not the administration actually takes into account what the students think, it’s important that they listen to them, because their opinions matter just as much as the person hiring them. The principal, president, etc. won’t have to be taught by them and listen to them each day, but the students will. Students know best what they want in a teacher, and they should be heard in these types of decisions.

Students’ voices aren’t heard enough in large decisions that will ultimately end up affecting the students more than the people that get to vote. If there is one process in which students must be heard, it should be on who teaches them. This process should be used in all major teaching positions that are open as a way to get to know the applicant in a classroom setting and make sure they fit right in the community and don’t be known as the teacher you don’t want to be stuck with.

Grant Sharretts is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and