Carson schools can’t find enough people to hire

Carson City School District administration building.

Carson City School District administration building.

The Carson City School District has declared critical labor shortages for substitute teachers, substitute school nurses and substitute custodians to recruit retired public employees and fill current vacant positions.

The district’s board of trustees on Oct. 11 approved the decision, which is allowed under Nevada Revised Statute 286.523, since turnover remains high for all three positions.

Superintendent Andrew Feuling said making such a declaration eliminates the typical 90-day waiting period for retired employees to return to substitute and enables CCSD to rehire them immediately.

Substitute positions are not part of the Nevada Public Employees’ Retirement System and therefore are not benefited positions, Feuling said. But for retired teachers, as an example, who might consider assisting with the new school year, it’s an option that would be expedited through their PERS checks.

“I would certainly love retired employees to come back into full-time teaching, but if the choice were, ‘I don’t want to be a full-time teacher anymore but I wouldn’t mind coming back to help out once in a while,’ this would allow them to do that as soon as they receive their first PERS check comes in August … and we would communicate that to our staff,” he said.

“Where don’t we have a critical labor shortage?” Trustee Joe Cacioppo asked. “I know this isn’t just us.”

Feuling said with certainty the only fully-staffed department CCSD has for now is maintenance, which has five employees. All other schools and departments have a general labor shortage of some kind.

“It’s the strangest of times with employment levels,” he said.

As of Oct. 7, CCSD was short 51 substitute teachers, one substitute nurse and four substitute custodians to meet its needs, according to the required documentation, and it has been a challenge to find candidates with the necessary job skills.

The motion to declare the labor shortages based on findings was approved by the board in a 7-0 vote.

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