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Houston School District Targeting North Carolina Teachers

The Houston Independent School District is hoping that some North Carolina teachers—among the lowest paid in the country—will respond to its entreaties and move across the country to teach in its schools.

The Texas district of 280 schools and nearly 200,000 students has been training its recruitment efforts in North Carolina, seeking teachers in areas such as bilingual education, secondary math and science, special education, and career and technical education, according to the News & Record.

This week the district has job fairs lined up in Raleigh, Greensboro, and Charlotte.

This is not the first time in recent months that Houston has made an overt play for North Carolina's teachers. Houston recruitment officers held a job fair for teachers in Raleigh in May.

Some North Carolina districts have seen high teacher turnover in recent years. Earlier this year Wake County reported that nearly 600 of its 9,000 teachers had left since July 2013, and teacher compensation was among the primary reasons they cited for their departures, according to the News & Observer.

The starting salary for a teacher in North Carolina is $30,800, while it is $49,100 in Houston, according to the News & Record.

A spokesperson for the Houston School District told WFMY News 2 that the district recruited nationwide, and was "looking for the best and brightest teachers to lead our students to achieve the highest academic levels."

Another reason Houston might be concentrating on North Carolina is Superintendent Terry Grier. Grier was superintendent in Guilford County Schools in North Carolina before moving to Houston in 2009.

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