Early next week, the School District of Philadelphia will publish its vacancy list of available positions for the 2015-2016 School year. All vacancies will be filled by the site-selection process. Does your school have its Staff Selection Committee ready to go? Do you know how the teacher members of the committee were chosen? Do you know what procedures the committee must follow for interviews and hiring?
All these issues are addressed in the School District’s contract with the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers.
For some frequently asked questions and the answers, please see the following:
1. Who can be on the staff selection committee at my school?
In elementary and middle schools the committee has five members—three teachers from the school, a parent from the school, and the principal. In high schools the committee has six members— three teachers from the school, a parent from the school, a student, and the principal.
2. Who chooses the teacher, parent, and student members and how are they chosen?
If your school has a School Council, that council chooses the teachers for the committee. IF your school DOES NOT have this council, the PFT Building Committee in conjunction with the principal chooses the teacher members. The Home & School Association (HSA) chooses the parent member, and the principal chooses the student member (in high schools).
***Principals should ask the staff who is interested in serving on the committee, and then have the SAC or Building Committee choose from the interested teachers. Teachers volunteer for this, there is no renumeration.
3. How are interviews conducted?
ALL candidates for positions in the school must be interviewed by the same committee and asked the same set of questions. The Principal, in consultation with the Staff Selection Committee, shall establish appropriate, objective criteria and procedures to identify candidates for filling vacancies.
4. What if the principal and the committee cannot agree on whom to hire?
In the event that the Committee fails to reach consensus, the Principal shall make the selection from among the three (3) most qualified applicants as ranked by the staff selection committee.
All these procedures are delineated in the PFT Contract (pages 72-73):
Rules and procedures for establishing and running a School Advisory Council (SAC):