Big Turnout at Campbell Co. Teacher Job Fair Despite Salary Concerns

Campbell Co., VA - The Campbell County school system held its first ever teacher job fair Saturday at Brookville Middle School, and more than 150 people came out to apply.

The district is not creating any new positions, it is replacing a couple of open spots that will be vacant once people retire or resign.

Katie Moyer has been teaching for five years in Pennsylvania. But Saturday, she made the trip to Campbell County in search of a new teaching position.

"My paychecks aren't monetary, it's seeing those children learn and really grow and teaching them how to be the best that they can be," said Moyer before her interview.

That dedication is what drove more than 150 people to the Campbell County teacher's job fair, which was organized by Campbell County Schools Director of Personnel Richard Burge.

"In recent years, there have been reductions in force in areas around here. There's a pretty good pool of teachers out there that are looking for jobs," said Burge.

Burge says the county let go of about 140 school employees since state funding cuts in 2008. And although the General Assembly's new budget may be giving the county more funding, he says it's still not enough.

School board members say they hope they'll be able to create new teaching positions in the future. But until then, they want to make sure their students have the best teachers. And events like this one show there are many to choose from.

"It tells me that there's still a lot of interest in education. They have chosen this profession because of their passion for kids and their passion to teach," said Leon Brandt, vice chairman of the Campbell County School Board.

That passion will keep driving people like Moyer.

"But you know what? You have to have teachers out there who are willing to sacrifice the pay just to help the kids out," said Moyer.

The General Assembly just passed a bill that says the state will match up to a 2% increase in teacher's pay. That's the first time in four years they've passed a law to directly increase teacher salaries.

Of course, budget and pay increase decisions rely with local school districts.