Perrysburg Schools takes Ohio option to lower sub requirements to combat shortage

Perrysburg Schools takes Ohio option to lower sub requirements to combat shortage

eSomethin Staff
Lucas Fiscus

At Perrysburg Schools, a bachelors degree is no longer a requirement to substitute teach thanks to a change by the Ohio Department of Education (ODE). There is an option to reinstate the rule at the end of this school year.

This change comes from a shortage of substitute teachers. ODE is allowing school districts to get substitute teachers who haven’t completed a bachelors degree. This change allows college students studying teaching who have completed a certain amount of hours to become substitute teachers in Perrysburg. It also allows part-time Perrysburg employees to get substitute licenses and become substitute teachers.

As for the cause of the shortage, Executive Director of Human Resources for Perrysburg Schools Kellie Johnson said that “it definitely has to do with the overall national waiver crisis that we’re facing. It is not at all unique to Perrysburg Schools. Every school in the area, in the state, and nationally is finding it hard to staff certain positions.”

According to a New York Times Article, a shortage of substitute teachers combined with many teachers taking sick days leaves schools forced to go completely virtual.

Johnson attributed the shortage in part, to COVID: “I think it’s a result of, obviously, COVID. I mean there was a certain point where people were nervous to come into schools so our sub list of people who would sub didn’t want to sub.”

In addition to the lowered requirements, Perrysburg Schools has gotten creative in advertising substitute teacher jobs and finding new ways to cover classrooms. Johnson mentioned a job fair that “was really successful […] where we gained several subs”.

Subs now must go through an application process including an interview with Johnson. If approved, the subs will use an application called “Frontline Education”. A website where teachers post their jobs and days where they will be absent for approved substitute teachers to apply for.

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