OHS Needs Teachers


Mrs. Wimberly’s online math class

Rachael Quinn

Orange High School is experiencing a shortage of teachers, along with many other schools across the country.

There is also a shortage of substitute teachers, meaning many classes don’t have anybody to watch over them. Orange has attempted to solve this problem by putting classes without a teacher in the auditorium. However, this solution also has problems, such as bad WiFi in the auditorium and only one adult to watch over multiple classes.

I asked Rowen McCallum, a sophomore, about her thoughts on the teacher shortage.

“My math class is online because they didn’t have enough in-person teachers. Since it’s online it’s really hard, especially because the WiFi in the 400 wing is terrible and I’m already not very good at math.”

Due to the shortage of staff, students have not been able to participate in the seven-block schedule on Fridays. This new schedule was supposed to begin on Friday, October 22, but the shortage of staff means there are not enough adults to lead clubs, tutor students, etc, and therefore the schedule has been delayed.

“I’m very sad that we can’t do the seven-block schedule,” said Isabella Panek, a sophomore at Orange High School. “I wanted to hang out with my friends and explore different extracurricular activities. I really love art and was looking forward to the art augmentation.”

The shortage of staff is also affecting other staff members and administrators. I asked the principal of OHS, Mr. Jason Johnson, about his thoughts.

“It’s very difficult to find substitutes,” he said. “When the pandemic hit, this district and districts across the state lost a lot of substitutes for whatever reason, like retirement or just not really wanting to come into the building. They were concerned about their own health, so right now there’s a substitute shortage, there’s a bus shortage, there’s a teacher shortage across this nation.

“If a class doesn’t have a teacher or a substitute, we’ve been having other teachers cover during their planning period, which is very difficult because it adds to extra stress when they’re supposed to be planning for their own classes. A few times, we’ve had our in-school suspension coordinator cover classes.

“There is a national shortage of teachers and school staff members and I’m not sure the exact reason for it. There’s a shortage of almost everything, like doctors, nurses, and people in the business field … I can only speculate why there’s a teacher shortage. It’s been here before the pandemic, but as we’ve progressed further and farther through the pandemic, the issue has only gotten worse. Again, I’m not sure the exact reason for why there’s so many shortages, but we need to figure it out quickly because at the end of the day, students are hurting.”