Rhode Island School District Launches High-Tech Recruiting System

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School districts in Rhode Island are recognizing the advantages of a new technology that makes recruiting teachers more efficient and cost-effective. The system is called SchoolSpring, and it centralizes management of the hiring process for budget-strapped schools.

We are always looking for ways to improve our organization by using technology to enhance our efficiency

Recruiting teachers is now more efficient and cost-effective for the Middletown Public Schools, one of the first districts in Rhode Island to adopt a new online technology that centralizes the management of the hiring process.

The new recruiting system is called SchoolSpring (http://www.schoolspring.com), a web-based educational recruiting service that started in Vermont in 2001 and is used by nearly every school district in that state. School districts in Rhode Island are recognizing the advantages of this new technology and are signing up.

Rosemarie K. Kraeger, Superintendent of Schools for the district explains why she is eager to use the new online teacher recruiting system. “We are always looking for ways to improve our organization by using technology to enhance our efficiency,” Kraeger explains. “Efficiency translates into dollars saved and with budgets being as tight as they are, we are always looking for ways to save money. The SchoolSpring system saves manpower, advertising costs, and more.”

SchoolSpring will allow the Middletown School District to reach a broader range of teachers with more diverse backgrounds. “We used to only reach local educators and sometimes teachers in the Boston area with expensive newspaper advertising. Now, we can cast a much bigger net looking for teachers with SchoolSpring.” Currently, SchoolSpring has over 40,000 educator members worldwide with more joining every day.

SchoolSpring not only allows teacher candidates to apply more easily to the school district jobs, it lets the district more effectively communicate with candidates. “SchoolSpring provides better communication and recruitment management,” says Kraeger. “Applicants can easily apply to more than one job and we can personalize our responses for every step of the application process. The system emails applicants when we have received their application, again when we are reviewing it, and we can even schedule interviews all online.”

Another benefit is the “electronic paper trail” that SchoolSpring provides. All recruitment activities are recorded in the system allowing the district to easily provide data for accountability.

Middletown Public Schools should see substantial savings in advertising costs from previous years. SchoolSpring is planning to launch a cooperative advertising program in Rhode Island allowing schools to advertise their open positions together in one newspaper ad. This program has proven very effective in the Vermont newspapers where SchoolSpring has been running the co-op advertising program for nearly 5 years.

Already, two more school districts in Rhode Island, Bristol Warren Regional School District and Portsmouth School District, have joined SchoolSpring.

Kraeger sees SchoolSpring as a great technology but also a lesson for her students. “This is an exciting program with substantial benefits,” she explains. “Using new technology like SchoolSpring reflects our current goal to bring the organization up a notch so that we can maximize the district’s resources through the enhancement of technology.”

About Middletown Public Schools: In partnership with students, parents, and community the mission of the Middletown Public Schools (http://www.ri.net/middletown) is to provide a comprehensive, safe educational environment that is learner-centered, enabling all students to succeed in the global economy of the 21st Century.

About SchoolSpring: Since 2001, SchoolSpring (http://www.SchoolSpring.com) has offered an innovative online solution for job seekers and recruiters in the education market. Founded by educators for educators, the company's mission is to provide an efficient and cost-effective method of connecting educators with jobs.

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Jim Fitzpatrick
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