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(844) 627-8267 | Info@NationalCyberSecurity

First-year teacher excited for new school year | #schoolsaftey

SEMINOLE, Fla. — With teacher shortages across the country, administrators with Pinellas County Schools say the district is in good shape to start the new year — with over 6,000 total instructional staff, they only have around 140 teacher vacancies, and are working to fill those positions every day.

What You Need To Know

  • District says it’s in good shape with few teacher vacancies

The Merrimack College Teacher Survey found more than a third of teachers surveyed said they plan on quitting within the next two years, but still, some have a passion for teaching and say it’s the only career for them.

One new Pinellas County teacher, Gabby Hernandez, says despite the issues teachers are faced with, she still chose this profession, even at a time when so many are leaving it.

“We are in my very first classroom. I’m teaching third grade!” Hernandez said as she worked on putting the finishing touches on her classroom.

Hernandez chose to join Bauder Elementary School in Seminole, and even though it’s her first year of teaching, she says she is very familiar with Pinellas County Schools.

“I went to Oldsmar Elementary, I went to Safety Harbor Middle School, and went to Countryside High School,” she said.

For as long as she can remember, Hernandez has wanted to teach. “In kindergarten, I would have all my stuffed animals set up around my room and I was reading like a teacher and showing the book.”

Despite her excitement, Hernandez says she’s very aware of the challenges teachers face — from the pay, to ever-changing standards and new laws — but still, she chooses to do it.

“There is a lot of craziness, but I fully believe it’s not from the kids, kids aren’t creating this craziness, and just because all this crazy stuff is happening, it doesn’t mean the kids don’t deserve a safe place to learn, and a person who can give that to them,” she said.

Part of her reasoning goes back to when she was a Pinellas County student, and her classroom was her safe place.

“I did have some family trauma when I was little and school was always a place I felt safe, so I wanted to provide that safe place for other kids,” Hernandez said.

Now, Hernandez intends to do just that, and admits while she is a bit nervous, “I’m very used to working with kids, I’m not nervous in front of kids, but when the parents come in, I’m kind of going to be like, ‘OK, this is really happening.’”

Despite the nerves, Hernandez says she’s most looking forward to creating connections with her students, and instilling a love for learning in them like some special teachers did for her.

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