Half of teachers at new Kohtla-Järve school hired from elsewhere in country

Renders of Kohtla-Järve State Upper Secondary School, which will open its doors this fall.
Renders of Kohtla-Järve State Upper Secondary School, which will open its doors this fall. Source: Rene Kundla/ERR

Half of the teachers to begin work at the new Kohtla-Järve State Upper Secondary School in Northeastern Estonia this fall have been hired from other parts of the country. While the majority of school staff has already been hired, the school is still seeking several more teachers.

Hendrik Agur, principal of the new state upper secondary school, told ERR that teachers have been hired from Tallinn, Tartu, Pärnu, Võru, Rakvere and even Saaremaa.

"Kohtla-Järve is a city with a bit of a particular status," Agur said. "It has seen its industry dry up and people move away. Now is the right time to start bringing people back here. Good people from all across Estonia will bring color and good skills [to the city]."

The new state upper secondary school has found over 40 teachers and school staff already, and the age range is broad — its IT chief is 18 years old and still an upper secondary school senior, while its oldest teacher is 73 years old.

"It's true, however, that our staff is young — the average age is 37," Agur said. "Lots of young and great people. We have seen a domino effect take place in that if great people have already come together, then more and more keep coming. I urge you, if you want to come build up an awesome school, we are welcoming applications for math, chemistry, geography, music, Estonian language and Russian language teachers."

The principal is confident that they will fill the remaining vacant positions by Sept 1.

According to Agur, the school's leadership will meet with its teachers on Aug. 5 to launch vision seminars and mentor programs. "August will be incredibly busy just as other teachers and schools already operating in a normal rhythm still have a long vacation ahead," he added.

Teachers relocating to Kohtla-Järve to work at the school will be provided housing in school-owned apartments. "The school currently owns ten renovated apartments," the principal said. "Those coming only need to bring along bedsheets, a suitcase and their computer; they have nice places waiting for them. We can ensure good living conditions for our teachers."

Sept. 1 marks the traditional first day of the school year in Estonia, where it is celebrated across the country as the Day of Knowledge.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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