Sunday, June 28, 2009

Public school hiring teachers from out of country!?

I have a simmering cauldron of mixed feelings on this one.

Isn't this our tax dollars recruiting and paying scabs to get around the teachers union?


An excellent way to interject international diversity into public schools?

Math and Special Ed teachers!?

From the Seattle Times:

Francisco Size came to Washington from the Dominican Republic last year on a type of work visa that each year draws thousands of other foreign professionals into the state.

But the 42-year-old is not a computer programmer or software engineer for the typical high-tech companies using these visas.

Rather, Size works as a math teacher in the Highline School District — one of scores of teachers across the state hired on the H-1B visa.

While use of the visa in the private sector at companies like Microsoft is well-known and hotly debated, less is known about school districts' use of the program. In fact, at least 40 Washington school districts have applied for H-1B visas to employ teachers and staff over the past five years.

For example, Puyallup hired a high-school English teacher from Jamaica, Seattle hired a special-education teacher from India, and Bellevue hired a parent-outreach coordinator from Chile.

Districts say they use H-1B workers to fill teaching positions with long-reported shortages in such areas as special education and math. Districts also have hired foreign nationals as English, elementary-school and substitute teachers. Like any employer using the H-1B program, schools do not have to show a lack of qualified U.S. teachers before they hire foreign workers.

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