CONNECTICUT (WTNH) — Across the state, the demand for substitute teachers has doubled, according to Kelly Education, an agency that provides these teachers to 50 different school districts across the state.
Even before the pandemic, several districts saw a teacher shortage, and now, there’s a spike in demand for substitutes.
Kelly Education is an agency that helps districts hire substitutes, paraprofessionals and custodial staff.
The agency said just in the last week, it has seen demand double as teachers decided if they were heading back into the building.
“We’re seeing a significant need from districts based upon recent resignations and FMLA pressures where teachers are making to decision to not return to the classroom,” said Brad Beckner, VP of Operations in the Northeast for Kelly Education.
Beckner said if schools don’t have enough teachers, classrooms will get redistributed, and in the worst cases, it could impact whether or not anyone is in the classroom.
“That could ultimately put a district in a situation where they would have to make a decision as to whether or not open up in a hybrid or in-person model and potentially leading them to a decision to go completely virtual,” Beckner said.
Despite this high demand, Beckner said Connecticut is actually fairing better than most states, and he believes that’s because Connecticut’s COVID-19 transmission rate is so low. To try and entice folks into substitute teaching some districts are even offering more money.
Qualified candidates interested in becoming a substitute teacher can do so online.