Competition for substitute teachers causes several area districts to raise pay rates

SPRINGBORO — Another shortage of the pandemic, substitute teachers, has brought a competitive market for subs on a daily basis and districts are looking for ways to stay competitive.

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Starting next week, Springboro schools will raise their daily pay for a substitute teacher from $100 a day to $125 a day. The reason behind the move was simple, attract more subs and stay competitive.

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“We’re having to do that to stay competitive in the work arena right now,” Scott Marshall, Springboro Schools Communications Coordinator told News Center 7′s John Bedell Wednesday.

“Before COVID, we knew and were aware and were affected, as a lot of districts were, of a teacher shortage in general. What we’ve seen throughout 2020, 2021, going into this year, is just a shortage on subs and just difficulties in trying to fill spots for teachers who may be out during the school year,” Marshall said.

The district hopes by upping the pay it will ease some of the stresses on the district.

“This is a way to stay in line with what the market is asking right now. And hopefully it is a way for a person to make a decision a little bit easier who may be on the fence about wanting to sub right now. Or make a little extra cash, or a way to help a school district in their area,” Marshall said.

News Center 7 reached out to several districts and found that Springboro wasn’t alone in raising pay rates for substitutes recently.

  • Middletown City Schools: Rate raised from $90 to $105 in November
  • Kettering City Schools: Rate increased to $125 a day in December
  • Centerville City Schools: School board is voting to approve a pay increase for subs and aides next week
  • Beavercreek City Schools: Increased from $100/day to $120/day at the start of the school year
  • Xenia Community Schools: Increased substitute pay to $100 at the beginning of the year
  • Troy City Schools: Increased substitute pay from $95 to $105/day at the start of the school year.
  • Greenville City Schools: Increased sub pay from $80 to $96.50/day a few years ago to stay competitive.

In addition, Beavercreek and Greenville said they are taking advantage of a new Ohio law that means substitute teachers do not need a Bachelor’s degree to be able to substitute teach.

The pandemic has exposed an issue already facing schools, a shortage of teachers, and that’s created a “perfect storm” now two years into the pandemic, Marshall said.

“Before COVID, you saw a shortage of teachers was already on the brink. It was always happening. Now since we’ve seen COVID throughout ‘20, 2021, COVID has really kind of pushed that to the forefront and you’re just seeing a perfect storm of there’s a labor shortage on top of the fact that you might be having more absences on top of your normal absences. It’s just the perfect storm,” Marshall said.

But as the perfect storm looks to continue, its the students that could face the most adverse effects.

“Every school district in the state of Ohio is facing this challenge right now. And the fact that you have a shortage with subs trying to fill those spots is a complete drain on the existing staff. If you’re not able to fill all the subs during a certain day, administration is going to have to cover. You may be pulling staff from other areas to cover in other areas,” Marshall said.

“You’re robbing Peter to pay Paul and in the end, it ultimately comes back to the classroom and can affect students.”