Hawaii Always Had A Hard Time Recruiting Teachers. The Pandemic Made It Harder…Hawaii is rethinking its teacher recruitment strategies, including virtual job fairs, but it’s a hard sell when even preexisting successful initiatives face a shaky future.

Soon after graduating from Harvard last May, Vinny Byju fulfilled his dream of moving to Hawaii to teach social studies to high school students. The islands held an allure not just for their natural beauty, but for their complex history and diversity of people.

Yet, come the end of this school year, Byju, 23, may no longer have the job he holds teaching AP Psychology, Modern Hawaiian History and Participation of Democracy to Aiea High juniors and seniors. He is also part of Teach for America, which helps participants work toward teacher licensure.

“Obviously, there is a lot of uncertainty, but I’m trying to make the most of it,” he said. “I am very happy to be employed for the remainder of the school year, but I have some planning to be done in terms of rent and lease. Right now, I’m sitting tight hoping I can stay in Hawaii.”


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