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Many Arizona schools are hiring. Here's what to know

Arizona Republic 1/31/2023 Renata Cló, Arizona Republic

Roughly a dozen school districts in Arizona are hosting job fairs in the coming weeks, hoping to fill hundreds of open positions, ranging from teachers to bus drivers to counselors and nutrition workers.

Washington Elementary School District, which serves north central Phoenix and east Glendale, held a job fair last week and will host a teacher interview fair on Feb. 25. The district has more than 200 available full-time open positions, including 21 positions that require certifications. The interview fair will happen from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at 4650 W. Sweetwater Ave. Those interested can find more information at

Great Hearts Academies, a charter school network, has 300 open positions and is also hosting a job fair Tuesday, Jan. 31, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Veritas Preparatory. More information about the openings and the event is available at

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Additionally, the Arizona Department of Education is holding its own job fair and career expo where job seekers can learn about requirements to work at schools and apply for jobs statewide on Saturday, Feb. 4, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hotel and Conference Center in Glendale's Westgate Entertainment District.

The Education Department's event will also offer information sessions to job candidates to better prepare them before they meet with school recruiters. These sessions will cover the benefits of working in a school system, ways of becoming an educator, considerations for working in rural locations and resumé and interview techniques.

The Education Department has posted details about public school district job fairs taking place over the next few weeks at

What you need to know about working at schools

There are different requirements to work in district, charter and private schools. Some of these requirements are mandated by Arizona law, some by the State Board of Education and others are employer preferences.

Some positions, such as teacher, occupational therapist, guidance counselor and nurse, require proper certification depending on the profession. Middle school and special education teachers are the most challenging certified positions to fill, according to Washington Unified spokesperson Pam Horton.

Bus drivers, nutrition services staff and special education aides are among the most difficult positions to fill that don't require certificates, Horton said.

Most school staff who interact directly with students need to get a fingerprint clearance card, according to the Certification Unit at the Department of Education. Candidates should review job position requirements and apply for their fingerprint clearance cards, if required, with the Arizona Department of Public Safety.

According to Horton and the Education Department's Certification Unit, best practices for candidates applying for school jobs include:

  • Ensuring resumés are updated
  • Researching the organization and position you're interested in on the organization's website
  • Asking questions about the organization you're interested in
  • Filling out applications completely
  • Providing all required documentation

Given the competitive environment to hire school staff, Horton said Washington Unified works with universities and community colleges with teacher prep programs. Additionally, they also work with staff who don't have certification yet but are eligible to get certified.

Education Department officials will be available at their job fair and career expo to counsel attendees on becoming a certified teacher in Arizona.

Renata Cló covers K-12 education. Reach her at

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Many Arizona schools are hiring. Here's what to know

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