- Associated Press - Thursday, April 28, 2016

HONOLULU (AP) - The state Department of Education has been inundated with thousands of applications from people all over the world after bringing attention to Hawaii’s teacher shortage, but officials say it has been frustrating to find that many applicants have little or no teaching experience.

Officials said more than 8,300 people from 98 countries have registered on the department website, and nearly 5,000 of them have completed their applications, KHON-TV reported (https://bit.ly/1rBrxdw). The DOE has tasked more staff with sorting through the crush of emails and applications.

“It morphed into something that is out of control, so to bring in the amount of staff to deal with these bogus applications has been frustrating for our staff, because we really want to make sure we get the best and the brightest,” spokeswoman Donalyn Dela Cruz said.

Before word got out that the DOE was in need of more educators, the department would receive 20 to 25 applications a day. On Monday, officials said they received 633 applications.

The department is expected to have as many as 1,600 vacancies next school year and has sent recruitment teams to meet with applicants throughout the U.S.

Retirements, other job opportunities and relocations have created the vacancies, the department said.

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Information from: KHON-TV, https://khon.com

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