HomeCampusH-1B Visa Holders Back in Baltimore Schools

H-1B Visa Holders Back in Baltimore Schools

Filipino teachers in Baltimore
Photo from Miles Aquas

Views from the Edge

Almost all of the two dozen Filipino teachers who had to leave Baltimore because of expiring visas are back in their classrooms.
Baltimore City Schools Chief Human Capital Officer Jeremy Grant-Skinner tells The Baltimore Sun the district was committed to bringing the veteran educators back because of the value they brought to a school system beset by high teacher turnover.

Most of the teachers worked in tough-to-fill math, science and special education positions, and were hired through a foreign teacher recruitment effort in the late 2000s to compensate for a lack of American-born teachers.

At the end of the 2018 school year, with their H-1B visas expiring, they had to return to the Philippines and leave behind the students they cherished in Baltimore.

Many city schools principals held the Filipino teachers’ spots in hopes they would be back. In most cases, instead of rushing to replace them, principals hired long-term substitutes for the first few months of this school year.

The school system’s commitment to have the teachers return speaks to the value these veteran educators bring to the Baltimore school district, said chief human capital officer Jeremy Grant-Skinner.

In a district beset by high teacher turnover, some of the Filipino educators had worked in Baltimore for more than a decade. Now that they’re back in the United States through visa extensions, the district plans to turn its attention to helping the teachers establish permanent residency.

“We’re happy to be in a place where almost everyone is back on the team,” Grant-Skinner said. “This is a group of people who are committed long-term to the district.”

Most of the two dozen Filipino teachers who had to leave Baltimore at the end of the last school year because of expiring visas have returned to their classrooms.

Baltimore City Schools Chief Human Capital Officer Jeremy Grant-Skinner tells The Baltimore Sun the district was committed to bringing the veteran educators back because of the value they brought to a school system beset by high teacher turnover.

Most of the teachers worked in tough-to-fill math, science and special education positions, and were hired through a foreign teacher recruitment effort in the late 2000s to compensate for a lack of American-born teachers. Like school districts across the country, they turned to hring foreign teachers.

Hundreds of foreign teachers were recruited by Baltimore schools. The Baltimore Sun reports that the district employs about 250 foreign teachers.

The Filipino teachers’s visas were audited last year by immigration officials carrying out Donald Trump’s order to reduce the number of H-1B visas under the belief that these visa holders were taking the jobs away from American citizens. The visas enable recipients to stay for an initial three years, with the possibility of extensions.

The district worked with an immigration firm to secure visa extensions and will now try to help the teachers establish permanent residency.

The Filipino teachers, who didn’t want to bring attention to themselves, did not want to be interviewed for this story.

AsAmNews has Asian America in its heart. We’re an all-volunteer effort of dedicated staff and interns. Check out our Twitter feed and Facebook page for more content. Please consider interning, joining our staff or submitting a story

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Latest

Worth the Time

Must Read

Regular Features

Latest

BadAssAsians

A Twitter list by @AsAmNews