St. Paul school district adding students and teachers

10:00 PM, Oct 9, 2012   |    comments
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ST. PAUL, Minn. - In the middle of a bustling fourth grade science class at Eastern Heights Elementary is Angie Wroblewski.

This is her first year at the school but not her first teaching job.

"With my former job there were budget cuts so my position was eliminated and I decided to look," she said.

Her job search brought her to St. Paul.

Pang Thao's search also brought her to Eastern Heights. The sixth grade teacher left a charter school when she heard there were openings in St Paul.

"I think I got pretty lucky here. I interviewed and then a week later I got the job," Thao said.

Unlike many school districts this year St. Paul actually added 200 teachers.

Michelle Walker, the district's chief of staff, said it's all part of their plan to raise achievement.

The more teachers they add, the more math and science instruction students get, according to Walker. In addition, the more teachers there are, the more they can learn from each other.

The new hires will also help with the slight uptick in enrollment. In a district of nearly 39,000 students, St. Paul saw at least 100 new students, Walker said. That may not seem like a lot but Walker said it's great news after a decade of steady decline.

"At high school we've seen students coming back, at middle school and then some kids are coming from charter schools and other school communities back to our district," Walker said.

The district expects the trend of increased enrollment and hiring to continue for some time. That's good news for new teachers like Wroblewski who said she's lucky to have a job when so many others don't.

(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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