BYRON, Ga. — You’ve likely heard the phrase, "Children are our future," but with a teacher shortage hitting classrooms, what does that future look like?
"We are there to help guide them, help push them, encourage them to be their best," fifth grade teacher Debbie Faulkner said.
That’s what she says makes a teacher significant.
"I’m 30 years in on teaching and they are what keeps me going and keeps me younger," she laughed.
Now, a teaching shortage is changing what she and other teachers once knew of the profession.
"When you’re having to catch them up on what they missed while they were out plus teach them what they’re going now into and keep it running smoothly, that’s the hardest part I think," she said.
Peach County has been doing the best they can, adding long-term substitutes to help. Now, for the first time in the district's history, "We are holding our first-ever job fair," the district's human resources director explained.
As turnover happens, things change, and teachers retire, Shannon Dotsikas says they’re looking for staff across the board.
"We're looking for transportation staff, we're looking for school nutrition staff, we're looking for clerical," she explained.
For those looking to apply, Hunt Elementary Principal Damika Glover wants you to know, "We do not lower the bar, we do not lower our expectations."
Her school has had to make due, too, and while they need the help, she wants those sitting in seats as applicants to teach from the heart.
"Be yourself and let the person you’re speaking to hear your heart, because that’s where we teach from as educators," she said.
The job fair will happen on Saturday from 9 a.m.- 12 p.m. at Peach County High School. The school says you can apply before the fair on www.peachschools.org or apply in person.