Johnson County school districts deal with ‘unprecedented’ classified staff shortages

school staff vacancies

Johnson County school districts say shortages for classified staff, including custodians, classroom aides and lunch room workers, are at an all time high as the new school year begins. The districts say the vacancies are impacting school operations as they shuffle staff around and ask some retired workers to help out part-time. Above, a lunch room staff member in pre-pandemic times. File image.

The school year is underway, but many classified staff positions remain unfilled within the four public school districts serving northern Johnson County.

The shortage of classified workers is hindering some district operations at the start of a school year already plagued by the spread of the Delta variant, contentious disagreements over school mask requirements and the challenge of catching up on educational ground lost through online learning.