first_imgSEATTLE — When you’re tasked with bringing more people of color to work in schools, the regular rules of recruiting don’t apply.Job fairs are a sea of white. So are most teaching colleges. And if you’ve waited until application season, you’re too late.Prompted by the diversity of their students, at least three of the Puget Sound region’s large school districts — Seattle, Bellevue and Highline — have launched ambitious efforts to recruit more classroom teachers who represent the backgrounds of their students.At Seattle Public Schools, administrators will have more money — from the city’s new education levy — to spend on creating a pipeline of teachers from staff and students already in the district. On the Eastside, the Bellevue School District is piloting a new screening system. And in South King County, a human resources transformation at Highline Public Schools has paved the way for a new recruiting team that scouts for talent widely, early and often.With this year’s crop of new educators, all three districts managed to hire more teachers of color than they lost between the 2012-2013 and 2017-2018 school years, according to a Seattle Times analysis. But it’s easy to show growth because the starting point was so low. Data from Bellevue and Highline show that the districts hired nearly the equivalent of their entire non-white teaching workforce since the 2012-2013 school year.Getting new teachers in is only half the battle. These glimmers of hope could be blunted if challenges around retention persist.Trying to change student outcomes — through recruitingChanging the faces who greet students is a moral imperative for Trevor Greene, an award-winning principal who three years ago joined just one other staffer in charge of recruiting for Highline’s human resources department. He helped lead an HR overhaul, creating a seven-member workforce planning and development team incidentally comprised almost entirely of people of color.last_img read more