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Lincoln puts on show to recruit new teachers

School administrators with slicked back hair, leather jackets and poodle skirts promoted their schools at Saturday’s Lincoln County School’s job fair.
“With teacher shortages, it’s so easy for them to find a good job,” said Stephanie Dellinger, an assistant principal at North Brook Elementary. “I think it’s hard to find good teachers.”
All 21 Lincoln County schools were doing their best to attract high-quality teachers.
The job fair, which was held at North Lincoln High School, had a ‘50s theme.
Tables promoting the schools had old year books, records and cut outs of Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley.
Many administrators put on ‘50s outfits in hopes of creating a fun atmosphere.
“This is why we do it like this,” said Lyle Back, coordinator of community schools and special projects. “We’re going to beat you into having a good time.”
Anita Robinson, wore her hair up in a pony tale with a pastel scarf tied around her neck, but she decided against the poodle skirt.
“It’s a way to make them realize we’re fun,” said Robinson.
Approximately 200 potential teachers came to the job fair.
Some were from neighboring counties, others made long road trips.
Jane McGuire drove all the way from Ohio in hopes of finding a teaching job.
“I want to move out of state, and I wanted to move to a small town,” said McGuire. “I heard Lincoln has a great school system.”
The potential teachers wore professional clothes and carried around a handful of resumes.
“It’s kind of like a job interview,” said Melissa Bruce, who drove from King’s Mountain. “We have to turn in a resume and application, and it’s formal.”
Some principals interview and hire teachers on the spot. Others accept resumes and set up job interviews.
Everyone was trying to make their school look as appealing as possible.
“They can peddle themselves anywhere,” said Ted Shiver, an assistant principal at Lincolnton Middle School. “We’re looking for the edge.”
A poster of the proposed new building for Lincolnton Middle School was set up next to their informational table in hopes of enticing teachers.
Principals and assistant principals hoped to find a teacher with a lot of experience in their subject.
Many also wanted someone with an enthusiastic personality.
“We’re looking for someone who’s going to fit into our school, and definitely someone with the right qualifications,” said Dellinger.
When finally hiring a teacher, it’s hard for many principals to tell immediately if they chose the right person.
“We take a leap of faith,” said Shiver.by Sarah Grano

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