MUNCIE — Leaders with Muncie Community Schools say they are seeing an increase in the number of people interested in becoming substitute teachers.
This comes as other districts across Central Indiana report substitute teacher shortages. One district even had to temporarily switch to virtual learning at one point during the pandemic because there were not enough subs to cover the number of teachers who were out sick or in quarantine.
Muncie Community Schools offer families the choice of in-person or virtual learning. Having trained and qualified substitute teachers will allow them to continue offering the in-person option.
“Subs are critical to be able to operate schools, and now more so than ever. We have teachers that are either in quarantine because of being positive or being in close contact and the amount of time that they are out of the classroom is longer than it has been in the past, so we find a greater need for subs than we ever had before,” said Dr. Lee Ann Kwiatkowski, Director of Public Education and Chief Executive Officer at Muncie Community Schools.
To meet the growing need, the district offers monthly substitute teacher training. “I definitely think I can make an impact while being a substitute teacher,” said Mykhail McClain. She just completed her substitute training with Muncie Community Schools. She is pursuing a masters in social work, but says this is a great way to serve her community right now and have a reliable income.
“I feel like it is a consistent job that you can do. Even in the trainings we saw in just one day of how many people were out and how many people said they could sub, and there were still several teachers that needed subs,” said McClain. She and others pursuing this opportunity are hoping to fill that gap.
McClain says there is something special about being in a classroom, and she wants to make sure all students have that opportunity.
“You learn how to stand up for your peers, you learn the things that you value, you learn who safe people are, you learn how to be respectful, and so there is so much more than just the education in the school,” said McClain.
District leaders say they are still hiring. “We are looking for people who like to be around children, who like learning, who are positive, who try to engage students to want to do the best they can during the school day,” said Dr. Kwiatkowski.
Substitute teachers must pass a background check, drug screen and have a high school diploma.
Pay at Muncie Community Schools ranges from $70 - $100 per day.
You can learn more about becoming a substitute teacher here. http://www.muncie.k12.in.us/human_resources/become_a_substitute_teacher