The Pennsylvania General Assembly recently approved bipartisan legislation that will help get more substitute teachers into public school classrooms and address the substitute teacher shortage that is stretching educators and support professionals to the breaking point. Gov. Tom Wolf signed the bill into law shortly after.
PSEA has been working closely with lawmakers and Gov. Wolf’s administration on the details of this plan. While it won’t solve every problem associated with the substitute teacher shortage, it is a very significant step in the right direction, because it:
- makes it easier for administrators to call retired educators to sub;
- allows people with inactive certificates to serve as day-to-day substitutes for an entire school year;
- gives more flexibility to use students who are in or soon-to-be graduates of teacher preparation programs as substitutes; and
- creates a new “Classroom Monitor” pilot program to broaden the pool of eligible people who can provide classroom coverage.
There are many people in Pennsylvania who will make good substitute teachers. This new law will help give them the opportunity to become substitutes and broaden the pool of substitutes available to school districts.