LEXINGTON, Ky. — Fayette County students will soon return to school on Aug. 16. District leaders held a “State of the School” update on Tuesday to discuss the return to the classroom.

What You Need To Know

  • Fayette County Public Schools superintendent, leaders, and community partners came together for the "State of the School" to talk about academic growth and expectations for student success

  • FCPS is working to address a teacher shortage as well as recruiting and keeping teachers of color

  • The district raised teacher salaries by nearly 10% to help recruit new teachers

  • Point 4 goes here Fayette County students return to school this month on Aug. 16

Heading into the fall, there’s still a teacher shortage across the state. At one point, Fayette County Public Schools was listed in a Kentucky Department of Education report as having a “critical shortage” in early childhood education and English as a second language.

FCPS is working to address the shortage with a nearly 10% salary increase.

“Everyone wants to be a part of the winning team,” said FCPS Superintendent Demetrius Liggins. “And so we are able to attract teachers that want to come here, not only in other parts of Kentucky but throughout our nation, that we’re really being intentional about including the very best.”

FCPS is also focusing on its English learners program and its Bright Ideas Grant. Plus, the county has already put aside $48,000 toward high-tech resources like coding devices for students.

Innovative programs, classrooms, and more are recognized for their contribution to a year of progress at FCPS. (Spectrum News 1/Sabriel Metcalf)

District leaders say they have plans to implement a strategy to recruit and keep teachers of color.

“I just want these kids to know we care. That’s why we give, that’s why we give our resources. Because we want them to have the future that we wish we could’ve had,” explained Shawn Pryor with FCPS.

Liggins says parents can do their part to help FCPS keep quality educatiors.

“Just to have a group of community members that are wrapping their arms around our school district really makes all the difference. It does take an entire village, as the saying goes, to educate our children,” WIggins shared.

The district also plans to establish a “Grow your own” program aimed at students and teachers who are already at FCPS and want to continue or start their education career.