Saint Paul Public Schools is working to hire and keep more teachers of color on its staff. 

To do that, it operates a program called the Saint Paul Public Schools Urban Teacher Residency Program (SUTR), along with the University of St. Thomas. 

SUTR "recruits, prepares, supports and retains" teachers of color who are great at their jobs and who accurately reflect the district's diversity. 

On Thursday, SPPS will be holding a "Signing Day" in order to welcome the newest round of educational recruits. 

It is supposed to mirror athletic "signing days," during which student athletes commit to a certain school or advanced program.

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But at SPPS' "Signing Day," teachers of color will be committing to working in the school district. 

Laura Medina-Coste is from the Dominican Republic. She went through the SUTR program in the past. Teachers like her who make it through the program are known as "suiters."

"It just seemed like a really great moment for me, because I was just waiting for the right program so that I could go into teaching," Medina-Coste said. "SUTR just was that program, so that day was really awesome."

Medina-Coste now teaches in the district. 

The program is a partnership with the University of St. Thomas that recruits teachers from under-representated backgrounds into an accelerate 15 month master's degree program.

The goal is for them to work within the St. Paul school disctrict when they're done.

Today's "signing day" event is at 4 o'clock.  

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