District desperately needs substitutes

first_img“You end up with compromised instruction,” Wagner said. Administrators from eight Antelope Valley school districts held a news conference to raise awareness about the problem and encourage the public to consider subbing. The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing requires substitute teachers to pass a basic skills test, have a bachelor’s degree and pass a fingerprint clearance from the Department of Justice. If an applicant does not have a bachelor’s degree, some districts will accept 90 semester units from a regionally accredited college or university. The pay ranges from $105 to $160 a day, depending on the type of assignment. There is flexibility in the job because substitutes can name their preferred grade level, school and days to work. The shortage of substitutes is blamed on a number of factors, including a shortage of regular teachers and the switch some districts made from year-round to traditional calendars. When districts had been on a year-round schedule, there was a ready pool of teachers who were off-track and available to substitute.Half of Lancaster’s 18 schools are on a traditional calendar. PALMDALE – Antelope Valley school administrators put out an urgent call Thursday for people to become substitute teachers to address a shortage of classroom help. On some days, officials said, school districts are unable to bring in substitutes for as many as 40 percent of absent teachers. In the Palmdale School District on Thursday, for instance, 41 classrooms lacked substitutes, officials said. “It’s an extreme shortage,” Keppel Union School District Superintendent Linda Wagner said. “The impact to kids is tremendous.” If a substitute in unavailable, an administrator – principal, assistant principal, curriculum specialist or someone else with a teaching credential – must put aside his or her own duties to take over the classroom, officials said. If no credentialed staffer is available, students are dispersed to other teachers, at times increasing class sizes to as many as 40 students, officials said. The substitute teacher pool is being further depleted because the best of subs are being hired to fill teaching positions that are vacant because of a shortage of regular teachers. Exacerbating the problem are new laws that require teachers to get more training and professional development, thus taking them out of the classroom, officials said. karen.maeshiro@dailynews.com (661) 267-5744160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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