We used to have those around here!
For a teacher who cares about their students, sometimes taking a day off can be a struggle between staying home to get better from an illness, or going to school in spite of being sick just to make sure that their students get what they need.
Lately this problem has been compounded because a shortage of substitutes is wreaking havoc in education! In this blog post, which happens to be on website of the company that my employer uses to contact substitutes, an administrator gives some insight on the matter.
One of the answers our district has used in response to this need when it arises is to have other teachers use their planning time to cover classes. It is being discussed as to whether or not they will be compensated in the future for “giving up their planning time.” Sometimes, like in my case as a specialist, they simply cancel music, art, P.E., etc. for the day. You can probably imagine how my colleagues appreciate this wrench being thrown in their daily lives!
Here are a few articles from the regional news about our local districts and the teacher shortages both regular and substitute.
Have you noticed substitute teacher shortages in your teaching situation? How have they affected you? What is the outlook you see for responding to this problem the future if this trend continues?