Henrico County Public Schools launches ‘Opportunity School’ initiative to address critical staffing needs

Henrico, Va., Feb. 24, 2023 — Henrico County Public Schools is launching a new “Opportunity School” initiative through the school division’s Career Ladder program to address critical staffing issues at schools most impacted by teacher shortages. Beginning in the 2023-24 school year, new and existing licensed instructional staff working at an Opportunity School will receive an annual compensation supplement of approximately $3,000. Additional staff, including permanent substitutes, teacher fellows and administrators, will also be hired to assist student learning.

“We are constantly evaluating how we can best serve our students and staff by expanding opportunities to provide multiple pathways to success,” said Amy Cashwell, HCPS superintendent. “This initiative will provide a tangible financial incentive and support the professional development of our instructional staff while helping to fill a dire need for additional, fully licensed teachers.”

Opportunity Schools are designated by their combined rate of 25% or more of vacant positions and provisionally licensed staff. HCPS will focus on these schools to provide holistic support to help recruit and retain fully licensed instructional personnel and assist them with this challenge. As a new pathway within the Career Ladder, entire schools will receive compensation supplements, additional staffing resources and specialized professional learning.

The 2023-24 Opportunity Schools are:

  • The Academy at Virginia Randolph/Virginia Randolph Education Center.*
  • Fair Oaks Elementary School.
  • Glen Lea Elementary School.
  • Laburnum Elementary School.
  • Elko Middle School.
  • Fairfield Middle School.
  • John Rolfe Middle School.
  • Highland Springs High School.*
  • Varina High School.

*Advanced Career Education centers at these campuses were considered separately from these schools.

Once identified, schools receive the designation and associated support for three years, regardless of any changes in their combined rate of vacancies and provisionally licensed individuals. Eligible licensed staff working at the school during that time will receive the compensation supplement.

Additional information, including a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions, is available on the “Careers” page of the HCPS website, at www.henricoschools.us/careers.

Information about the HCPS Career Ladder can be found at www.henricoschools.us/career-ladder-program.