ROCHESTER, N.Y. — As the school year ends, districts aren't wasting any time and are busy trying to recruit new employees. 

Hiring bilingual teachers can be especially challenging for districts. The Rochester City School District says there is a critical shortage of all bilingual positions. If you speak Spanish and English you are encouraged to apply for a job now. 

What You Need To Know

  • The Rochester City School District is on a mission to continue building a talented and diverse workforce that reflects the community it serves

  •  The RCSD is hiring bilingual teachers

  • There are many incentives available including tuition assistance for teacher certification

Annette Velazquez-Betancourt is bilingual. Her family is from Puerto Rico.  She's worked for the Rochester City School District for 33 years. She started as a clerk and is now a senior personnel analyst. 

"Being bilingual and being able to speak Spanish is super, super huge and important to the district and our students," Velazquez-Betancourt said. "We have a very big bilingual population, not just students, but people working here. There is a lot of opportunity for growth."

She knows that first-hand. She was also a student at the RCSD. The district says 34% of its student population is hispanic. It's one of the fastest growing student populations in the country.

Chris Miller is RCSD's chief of human capital. He says the district will help bilingual candidates earn their teacher certification.  

"Our institutes of higher education are not graduating students who are choosing this as a career path," Miller said. "So [we] are working to grow our own through helping paraprofessionals and teacher assistants who are bilingual and already live in our community to help them become teachers by supporting them with tuition assistance, helping with certification and giving them guidance and coaching."

Velazquez-Betancourt says all the district support over the years got her to where she is today and she's so proud of that. She says it feels like family here.

The RCSD also has bilingual job openings in district transportation, food service and clerical. The biggest need is bilingual teachers. The Rochester School District virtual bilingual job fair is Thursday, July 18 from 1 to 3 p.m.

Job seekers are encouraged to look at similar opportunities within their home school districts. Districts want to get these jobs filled now so they are ready and full-staffed by the fall.