Earlier this month, the school board agreed to pay the staffing agency Stride Learning Solutions up to $2.5 million to provide virtual teachers. Skye Duckett, chief human resources officer, said after the board’s vote that she didn’t expect APS will need to spend the full amount authorized under the contract.
She said it’s intended to be a back-up plan in case the district can’t hire enough teachers through other methods.
To help with the mid-year hiring push, APS previously announced it will pay teachers a $3,000 bonus. The district’s teacher salary ranges from $49,048 to $96,830, depending on years of experience and educational degrees.
The district started classes in August with about 680 online students.
In the early weeks of the school year, COVID-19 cases surged and more families began requesting a virtual option. APS officials announced in September that they would reopen online enrollment for the second semester.
COVID-19 cases have since fallen, with the district reporting 47 staff and student cases for the week ending Nov. 12. That’s down from a high of more than 400 cases for the week that ended Aug. 27.