Bossier Parish Schools is a high-performing fast-growing district in northern Louisiana. It’s the 9th largest district in the state serving 23,000 students and 3,000 employees, including 1,500 teachers and is one of the fastest-growing districts in the state. Home to Barksdale Air Force Base, the district is comprised of 32 schools – 20 elementary schools, 6 middle schools, and 6 high schools.
Bossier Parish Schools was facing a shortage of substitute teachers – a problem which was exacerbated during the pandemic. At the time, the district required its substitute teachers to take their mandatory safety and compliance training in person. This became a significant hurdle during the pandemic as substitute teachers weren’t showing up for the mandatory training.
“Like everyone else we were having difficulties getting subs and they were not coming to the training,” said Stewart Thompson, director of technology. “So we decided we needed to modify what we’re doing and put all of this required mandatory training online.”
Bossier Parish Schools was already using Vector Training’s online safety and compliance training courses (formerly SafeSchools) for its teachers. The online component was invaluable and the district also appreciated the reporting features of the platform, the frequency in which the courses are updated, and the ability to customize the training. So it was an easy decision to adopt Vector Training for its substitute teachers as well.
Previously, there would be a single date set for the substitutes’ in-person training. If the substitute teachers didn’t come to that training, they had to schedule a day to make it up. Once the district switched to Vector Training’s online courses for substitute teachers, the district simply had to assign the courses and set a deadline for when the substitutes had to have their courses completed. It made it easier and more convenient for everyone involved because it eliminated the need for the substitute teachers to physically come to a building to be trained, and it helped them more easily fit the training into their schedule.
While there is still a substitute teacher shortage in the district, the switch to Vector Training for its substitute teachers has helped Bossier Parish Schools create a more efficient and user-friendly onboarding experience for their substitutes. The district also now provides Vector Training’s online courses to its custodial staff as well and appreciates being able to manage those trainings in the same platform as the training for substitutes and teachers.
“We’ve had really good success with Vector Training in making sure we are getting our substitutes the necessary amount of training,” said Thompson. “Switching to Vector Training helped us adapt during COVID and has served us well ever since. We still have sub shortages, but this helps to get the substitutes we do have in the classroom faster.”
The Vector Training online training management system completely automates staff and student training in K-12 school districts. It provides access to high-quality courses on important safety, prevention, and special education topics by leading experts, all in one convenient online system. It offers courses in areas such as Safety & Compliance, Special Education, School Bus Driver Training, Facilities Maintenance, Child Sexual Abuse Prevention, and Diversity & Inclusion. It also offers a set of Student Safety and Wellness courses to help teach students about issues, including bullying, suicide, vaping and drug prevention, digital citizenship, and more.