KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Kansas City, Kansas, Public School students headed back to class in-person, while a couple teachers joined through a computer because they don’t live in the area.
It’s the result of one high school getting creative in filling the teacher shortage.
The principal of Wyandotte High School has called on teachers from out of state to teach classes virtually, until they can find more permanent replacements.
The Class of 2026 walked the halls for the first time at Wyandotte High School. K-5th, 6th, and 9th graders had a soft start Monday.
“They get to meet the teachers, do some team building, take a tour of the building and get familiar with their new environment here,” band teacher Kevin Reliford said.
Something else new this year – hiring teachers located in other states who can “Zoom in” and teach KCK kids.
“We’re coming up with back up plans and back up plans to make it work for our students so that we can provide them with the education that they so deserve,” Principal Mary Stewart said.
On the first day of school, the district as a whole was short 45-50 educators. Wyandotte High needs to fill three teaching positions.
“But we have some vacancy subs filling those positions,” Stewart said, “and we have other teachers mentoring those subs and helping them through and sharing their work. So, they have support.”
Stewart said they’re working with a company called Proximity Learning. She has one teacher Zooming in from Texas and another from Utah.
An in-person staff member will also be in the classroom to help students.
“It’s not ideal, but it is a licensed teacher, and it is someone who is qualified in the content area,” Stewart said. “Again we have the on the ground support here for the students as well. So, they’re getting really two adults working with them.”
Stewart is excited to see these students grow into graduates.
Upperclassmen in Link Crew showed Freshmen the ropes before the entire student body fills the halls Tuesday.
“It is very important that the freshmen feel like they are not just a number and that they are someone important here at Wyandotte,” Stewart said.
All students in KCK schools head back to class Tuesday.
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