ECISD Administration Speaks About Impact of International Teachers
June 3, 2014 at 8:53 PM CDT - Updated July 28 at 12:39 AM
By Alicia Neaves
ECTOR COUNTY - With the shortage of teachers in the Basin, districts like ECISD have gone international. NewsWest 9 followed up to see how recruiting teachers from all over the globe has paid off for the district.
As the Director of the ESL/Bilingual Department explains, it not only helped the students but even the teachers themselves.
4,500 students participate in the Bilingual/ESL Program at ECISD, which means the need for bilingual teachers in the Basin has skyrocketed. The district didn't just recruit locally. They went international.
"We have been in Spain, we have been in Puerto Rico this year and also we go to Houston every year. They hold the International Job Fair, International Teacher Job Fair and that's another venue for us to recruit teachers from Mexico," Executive Director of the Bilingual/ESL Department, Pilar Moreno-Recio, said.
1,000 students joined the bilingual program in the 2013-2014 school year. To prepare for the continued increase, the district will open six new bilingual classrooms next year, making room for more teachers from around the world.
"That's what makes our program unique. Having different teachers from different countries from Venezuela, from Spain, from Mexico coming and enriching the lives and the language of these students," Moreno-Recio said.
Cultural exchange is what enriches the district as students learn all types of dialects and absorb the different ways of life from various spanish-speaking countries.
"When you pull a book from the shelf, you don't find that book reading Spanish from Spain or Spanish from Mexico. You can find that book written in the very many varieties of the Spanish language written from around the world," Moreno-Recio said.
The most important take away from this decision to recruit internationally is the impact it has on more than just the students.
"I remember when I was a teacher and I came originally from Spain. I learned as much from my students with the way they talk as much as I hope they learned interacting with me," Moreno-Recio said.
International recruitment for the next school year depends on the needs of the district.
If you are interested in becoming a bilingual teacher at ECISD, the district encourages all who wish to apply to visit their website, http://www.ector-county.k12.tx.us/ for more information.