ST. CLAIR COUNTY, Ala. (WIAT) — The St. Clair County Board of Education approved a pay raise for substitute teachers in an effort to fill absences created by COVID-19 infections and quarantines.
“Our goal is to keep the doors open, and for that to happen, we have to have staff and if staff are sick, than we have to have those substitute teachers,” said Mike Howard, Superintendent of St. Clair County Schools.
Schools have always had an issue recruiting substitute teachers, but it has been even more challenging during the pandemic. Other districts in Alabama are also dealing with similar problems.
“My other superintendents around us are dealing with the same issue,” Howard said.
Last year the district hired a permanent substitute for every school campus, but the 2021 fall semester is off to an overwhelming start.
“We are using that person every single day and we still need more subs,” said Howard.
Absences are impacting each school campus differently. Howard hopes the pay increase will attract more people to apply to be substitute teachers.
“Those substitute teachers can make $105 a day and that’s a $40 increase per day than what it was,” Howard said.