Affoltern ZHThe school has a 6,000-franc promotional video shot due to a shortage of teachers
The Käferholz school is urgently looking for four teachers. Despite the elaborate YouTube video, no one applies.
- Marino Walser
- Daniel Krahenbuehl
That’s what it’s about
The Käferholz school in Affoltern is looking for four teachers for the new school year.
Due to the shortage of teachers, the school decided to produce a promotional video for 6,000 francs.
Despite the complex video, no one has yet applied for a position.
In Switzerland and especially in the canton of Zurich, there are not enough teachers. This is also felt by the Käferholz secondary school in Affoltern ZH. Four positions are currently vacant there. Although the individual job advertisements have been advertised for more than two weeks, no one has yet applied for a position. “It is extremely difficult to find adequately trained teachers,” says school principal Aaron Schnyder. But time is running against the Valais headmaster: the vacant positions must be filled by the start of the new school year.
Schnyder therefore relies on a YouTube video in which children and teachers from the Käferholz address potential new teachers. “We are a great team, we listen to each other and we feel supported by each other. There are many other reasons to work for us», the trainees and teachers advertise.
«No 0815 video»
It’s not new that a school building relies on video to attract teachers, says Schnyder. “But what is new is that the video is professional and was created by an external agency. It’s not a run-of-the-mill video.” And for that, the headmaster made a chunk loose. “The video cost us 6,000 francs.”
He was convinced by the video, says Schnyder. Nevertheless, he has to admit that the flood of applications has stayed up so far: “The video has been clicked on more than a thousand times, but no application has been received.” However, the video had welded the students and teachers together during the development, which is a positive side effect.
More places at teacher training colleges are required
Schnyder can only explain to a very limited extent why the shortage of teachers has become so widespread in Switzerland. «We have certainly lost a lot of teaching staff due to retirements and baby boomers. But even the demanding work can be daunting.” Although there is the possibility of using lay teachers, it is not an option at the moment. “We are looking for people for our school who have a degree from a teacher training college and, ideally, already have professional experience,” says Schnyder.
The worst-case scenario for Schnyder is that he still has to rely on teaching staff who can only do the job thanks to a quick rush and without in-depth training. “So that we are no longer confronted with this problem in the future, it is important that the canton creates more places at the teacher training college.”
“The situation is really precarious”
In times of “a noticeable, precarious shortage of teachers”, schools have to break new ground and develop ideas to draw attention to themselves, says the President of the Swiss Teachers’ Association, Dagmar Rösler. “It has probably never been so difficult to fill vacancies with adequately trained teaching staff,” says Rösler. The situation is really precarious at the moment.
The fact that Schnyder only wants to use lay teachers in extreme emergencies is exemplary, says Rösler. That is an “absolutely” correct attitude. “In order to be armed and prepared for this demanding job, you need the right training – just like in any other job.”
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