Listening Tour Reponses

These are Human Resources Department-related questions asked during the Listening Tour hosted by the Board of Education in 2018.


  1. How do I know about open positions at KCKPS?
    Jobs are posted on the KCKPS website as well as social media sites, educational institutions, government and regulatory agencies, private and public organization websites or newsletters. Additionally, the jobs are posted on equal opportunity media websites and/or advertisement with access to provide vacancies to potential applicants of diverse backgrounds that reach a pool of candidates locally, nationally, and internationally.

  2. How do I know if I am qualified to teach in the KCKPS District?
    The Recruiting team evaluates each teacher candidate’s application, resume and experience to determine the type of license an individual has or may be eligible for in accordance with the job posting requirements.  The Professional Workforce team provides additional review and assistance, as needed, for all traditional and alternative licenses pathways such as: Restricted Licenses, Expired Licenses, STEM, Out-of-State, Career Technical Education (CTE), Visiting Scholars, and International teachers programs.  

    Professional Workforce and Recruiting Teams held two training sessions in the summer and fall of 2018 with the Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) to seek guidance and advisement on how to expand and use the entire suite of license pathways to filll our teacher vacancies. We have increased the number of teachers who will have alternative certification and/or restricted licensure over the last two years.  

  3. What is the process if I want to become licensed to teach in KCKPS?
    We place a high priority on hiring qualified individuals who are licensed through the State of Kansas State Dept. of Education. Individuals may become licensed to teach in KCKPS in the following ways:
    • Traditional licensure process for any individual who has graduated from a teacher education program in an accredited university.
    • Licensure through alternative certification programs such as KCKPS Teaching Fellows, Para to Teacher program.
    • Licensure through an accredited university upon acceptance into a Master’s in Education program (restricted license)

  4. How can I become a Special Education Teacher in the District if I have a general education degree?
    We have provided opportunities for general education teachers to become Special Education teachers by paying for their Special Education waiver courses.  KSDE allows general education teachers to immediately teach in the Special Education area while obtaining 10 courses that would provide them with a provisional license.  In return for the payment of the waiver classes, teachers agree to work additional years at KCKPS. 

  5. Do you review applicants from previous times for current job postings or do I have to apply each time?
    It’s always best to reapply for positions that you are interested in pursuing.  We do try to scan old applications but most of the time applicants have already taken other positions especially if the application is more than 30 days old.  Additionally, the Recruiting team constantly scans resumes from multi-licensed teachers, to encourage them to review additional job openings.  Invitations are sent to all candidates for our local District Career Fairs. This may include, but is not limited to: applicants, previous employees who may have left our district and wish to return, and referrals.  If a previous employee is able to be rehired, invitations are provided to them as well.

  6. Do you have opportunities for “special assignments” or volunteer opportunities for those who like to work with kids but don’t have teaching degrees?
    Teachers are required by state law to be  licensed in order to be in the classroom with students.  We do not hire teachers for “special assignment."  Individuals who come into our schools have to be hired as an employee with our onboarding process (background check, TB test, references).  If someone wants to work within our schools and are not hired as an employee, s/he could apply to be a volunteer within our school district.  To be a volunteer, a person is required to complete an application and background check through Student Services.

  7. Who makes the decisions about hiring classroom aides?
    The budgets are set annually which affects the amount of classroom aides we have within each building.  It is our hope that as the school district budget allows, we can continue to offer these positions to some of our KCKPS alumni while they are attending community colleges or universities locally once they obtain either 48 or 60 credit hours which many of our classroom aide jobs require.

  8. How do you determine what are “hard to fill” positions and which positions are currently identified this way?
    Currently, the hard-to-fill positions include all math, science, English, Language Arts, Spanish, and special education jobs. These jobs are identified through KSDE and/or among jobs listed in the Teachers' Negotiated Agreement.

Professional Development

  1. What support is provided to help teachers develop their skills?
    As outlined in the Teacher’s Negotiated Agreement, the Intensive Assistance Support is a part of the teacher evaluation process. This process is designed to be additional support to those teachers who have been identified through the evaluation process as needing the support

    KCKPS is fortunate to have Professional Development (PD) every Wednesday.  Our PD is conducted both at the building level and the district level.  These sessions focus on the goals and expected outcomes as outlined by district leadership.  

    The district has also developed partnerships with several colleges and universities to promote continuing education for all of our staff.  We have two universities, Mid-America Nazarene University and Grand Canyon University who offer discounts to our employees as well as their families.  Additionally, we invite 30-plus colleges twice a year to participate in a College Education Day held at Central Office to discuss career development and encourage employees to pursue educational goals that will impact their ability to seek other positions within our school district.

  2. I am a classified staff member and want to know what professional development is available for me?
    The district has also developed partnerships with several colleges and universities to promote continuing education for all of our staff.  We have two universities, Mid-America Nazarene University and Grand Canyon University which offer discounts to our employees as well as their families.  Additionally, we invite 30-plus colleges twice a year to participate in a College Education Day held at Central Office to discuss career development and encourage employees to pursue educational goals that will impact their ability to seek other positions within our school district.

Kansas City Kansas Public School Employee Benefits


Club 500 Onsite Fitness Center

  • Onsite Wellness Coordinator
  • Free Onsite Fitness Center
  • Completion of wellness criteria
    • $200 employer contribution onto a Flex Spending Account Or a Health Spending Account
    • $20 monthly discount on medical plans
  • Enrollment into a qualified Blue Select Plus Plan
    • Additional employer contribution onto a Flex Spending Account Or a Health Spending Account
  • Employee Assistance Program


  • 8 Medical plan options
    • Four of the plans are $0 cost to the employee, if wellness criteria is met
  • 2 Dental plan options
  • 1 Vision plan
  • Medical Spending Accounts


  • Kansas Public Employee Retirement System (KPERS)
  • Long Term Disability
  • KPERS Life Insurance policy
  • Voluntary 403 B & 457
  • Retirement Workshops

Voluntary Plans

  • Critical Care
  • Short Term Disability
  • Accident Insurance
  • Hospital Indemnity
  • Voluntary Life Insurance
  • Identity Theft
  • Cancer Plan

Plan Providers

Blue Cross Blue Shield of KC, Guardian Dental, Superior Vision, Manhattan Life, Info Armor, Loyal American, UMB, CBIZ, KPERS, and Valic


The KCKPS Certificate:

Because KCKPS is a member of the Coalition of Innovative Schools, our district is allowed to certify individuals who have never obtained a degree in Education to teach in high-need content areas with a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree. The high-need content areas include teaching positions in middle and high schools and may include Science, Math, English (English Language Arts), Engineering, Technology and Information Systems, or Finance/Accounting. Other content areas may be needed on a limited basis and will be determined annually based on the needs of the district.

This is one of the two pathways now available for prospective teachers. This pathway may require limited costs associated with the submission of information to verify education or other data required by the Kansas State of Education. Additionally, the Fellows program candidate may be required to contribute financially for books or supplies associated with the minimum two year required training program as directed by the KCKPS district personnel.

The Master’s of Art in Teaching:

Another pathway is the Master’s of Art in Teaching program from Pittsburg State University, with many courses taught by qualified KCKPS personnel. This pathway requires the cost of the hourly credits for each course taken and, if all measures are met, results in an earned Master’s degree and a provisional teaching license. Once hired and teaching, the candidate transitions to a full license and is then eligible to teach anywhere in Kansas.


Alternative Pathways to Teaching

KCK Certificate

Masters of Art in Teaching / KSDE License

Application Process

1.     Apply to program: Complete the online application, including references, statement of purpose, resume, and letters of recommendation

2.     Pass Practice Praxis (Middle-level Content exam)

3.     Submit all college transcripts

4.     Participate in Selection Day

5.     Meet all application requirements for KCK

6.     Apply to PSU Graduate program-Masters of Arts in Teaching

7.     Transcript analysis for possible deficiencies in content area, Submit all OFFICIAL college transcripts

8.     Pass Content Praxis (7-12)

9.     Participate in Selection Day.


KCK Certificate

Masters of Art in Teaching / KSDE License

Summer 1

Intensive Summer Institute

·       Module 1 – Instructional Planning

·       Module 2 – Classroom Management

·       Module 3 – Diversity

·       Module 4 – District Orientation

·       Student Contact / Summer School

·       TCHL 879 – Instructional Planning

·       TCHL 836 – Positive Classroom Management

·       TCHL 851 – Multicultural Approaches to Diversity in the Classroom

Fall/Winter 1

·       Module 5 – KCK Induction and Mentoring

·       Module 6 – Instructional Strategies

·       Module 7 - Application of Content

·       TCHL 825 – Initial Experience

·       TCHL 839 – Techniques for Teaching (Secondary)

Spring 1

·       Module 8 – Best Practices in Assessment

·       Module 9 – Content Literacy

·       TCHL 878 – Assessment for Effective Teaching

·       TCHL 720 -Content Literacy

Summer 2

·       Module 10 – ESOL Strategies

·       Module 11 – Inclusion Class

·       SPED 815 – Individuals with Exceptionalities

·       TCHL 854 – Adv. Methods for ESOL

Fall/Winter 2

·       Module 12 – Learner Development

·       Module 13 – Integrating Technology

·       EDTH 868 – Integration of Technology

·       PSYCH 810 – Advanced Educational Psychology

Spring 2

·       Module 14 – Leadership and Collaboration

·       TCHL 849 – Culminating Experience

Back to KCK Teaching Fellows Home

Kansas Transition to Training Grant

Kansas State University's new Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)--an intensive, one-year, online degree specifically designed for people who have already earned a bachelor’s degree but want to pursue elementary teaching—allows school districts to “grow their own teachers.” Field experiences are arranged in an accredited school near the student—LIKE YOURS. In addition to earning their MAT, students are recommended for K-6 teaching license upon successful completion of the program. 

The Kansas Board of Regents will fund 30 Kansas Transitions to Teaching Fellowships ($6,000.00—roughly 1/3 of the total tuition and fees) for admitted students from western Kansas (KBOE Area 5), KCK, Wichita, and Topeka. The fellowships will be applied to tuition/fees for Kansas State University's Master of Arts in Teaching Program (MAT). 

The MAT was recently featured on Action News 41 in Kansas City: 

The director of the MAT, Dr. Tom Vontz, will host an online interactive information session on Thursday, February 2. Interested students can go to: Zoom may be downloaded to any device at ZOOM. 

Please forward this email to staff, parents, and/or others in your service area that might be interested in this opportunity such as long-term subs without certification, paras with undergraduate degrees, or parents interested in becoming elementary teachers. 

Application deadline is APRIL 1, 2017. Priority deadline for KTTT Fellowships is MARCH 1, 2017. 

If you want more information you may call 785-532-5724, email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), or visit our website

Flyer PDF


The Kansas City, Kansas Teaching Fellows program began in 2000 as a partnership between Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools; Pittsburgh State University, and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The program was developed and facilitated in coordination with The New Teacher Project of New York to address the need for teachers in high-needs schools. The Kansas State Department of Education approved the alternative licensure program.

Between 2000 and 2010, the Kansas City Kansas Teaching Fellows program recruiting high-performing individuals from non-education related professions to teach in our KCK classrooms. We prepared and hired more than 200 teachers for the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools’ elementary and secondary classrooms. With Fellows, the district was able to staff vacancies that had been filled by long-term substitutes for many years.

Previously, nearly every high school math and science department consisted almost entirely of Fellows and achievement rates rose tremendously. While the initial need was for the math and science teachers, over time, we also accepted Fellows for elementary positions and for all content areas, including English, Social Studies, Spanish, Business, Fine Arts, and Family and Consumer Sciences.

Participants selected for the Fellows program completed a six-week summer institute “boot camp” experience that included teaching district summer school classes to KCK students in the morning and taking graduate-level classes in the afternoon or evening. The summer boot camp was taught by district personnel who prepared these teacher candidates for teaching in a high-needs school and meeting the needs of our students.

After an absence in the Fellows program from 2010-2015, KCKPS Administration team determined that school districts are beginning to feel the pressure of another teacher shortage, not only in KCK but across the state of Kansas and throughout our nation. KCKPS, with our Pittsburg State University partner, has re-ignited our successful KCK Teaching Fellows program for the 2016-2017 school year.

The vision of the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools is to be one of the Top 10 School Districts in the Nation. Our goal is that “Each student will exit high school prepared for college and careers in a global society, and at every level, performance is on-track and on-time for success.” By re-igniting the KCK Teaching Fellows program we will be able to ensure that our students have an additional source of highly qualified teachers, in order to reach their goals and for the KCKPS to continue the journey to becoming a Top 10 School District. Exciting partnerships with other colleges and universities, teaching organizations, business representatives and community agencies will enhance our ability to support Diploma+ program initiatives that will spread throughout our school district over the next few years.


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