Some states relying heavily on substitute teachers

Monday, July 8, 2013

Susan Rodgers has substituted in K12 classrooms in North Idaho for 30 years.

Some days are spent working one-on-one with special education students; on other days she might be managing a kindergarten classroom or teaching high school math.

The 54-year-old works almost every day, she said.

Her qualifications: an associate degree in elementary education, enough assertiveness to manage a class of even the rowdiest students and a good reputation among teachers.

From kindergarten to graduation, an average student will have spent more than a year being taught by a substitute teacher.

Depending on the state, the quality of the education provided by “subs” varies.

Twenty-eight states require no more than a high school diploma for those temporary teachers, according to national data. Seven require some college education, and 15 states require substitutes to have a college degree.

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