Early education programs in need of new staff for fall

Hampden County

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Job fairs are becoming a bit of a trend as companies face pandemic-driven staffing shortages.

The Valley Opportunity Council‘s (VOC) Early Education Program has roughly 75 employees, but they still need to fill 15 positions.

“There’s a lot of stress on the staff, on the kids, everybody experiences stress right now,” Alex Jansen, director of operations for the organization said.

VOC is pulling out all the stops, with free food and activities at their job fair, in hopes of garnering interest from potential staff members. Kathleen Stark, a licensed social worker, has worked with the organization for 11 years, she hopes the positions will be filled in time for September as they prepare for more students.

“You know kids right now, they need a balance, they need to get back and to get socialization and they need all of this back. And we have some wonderful talented teachers right now and we don’t want to burn them out either,” Stark said.

In addition to teaching positions, the VOC is also looking to hire more bus drivers.

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