Substitute Teaching Class.
So, I’ve been up since 5 in the morning today, but that is okay. I knocked out the first part of becoming a substitute teacher today. The 4 hour class to get certified. In this post I will be talking about what we discussed and other matters I took away from it.
Let’s dive on in.
For starters, if you have taken an education class, or you were previously a teacher, this is going to be some of the most boring hours of your life. We talked about code of ethics, managing your classroom, and how to handle the new environment. This is stuff I already learned about during my first education class last semester. It was a nice refresher and I did learn some new tricks, but for the most part it really was like they just took a whole semester class and cramped it into 4 long hours.
So what was the presentation like?
The first 3 hours was spent by all 40 of us telling our life story of how we ended up here. It’s not as dreamy as it sounds. Out of 40, I dare say only about 6 or 7 of us were aspiring teachers. The majority? Stay-at-home/retired moms who wanted to go be around their kids at the school. I am not a parent, so maybe I am biased, but I am definitely torn on this. On one hand, as an aspiring teacher, I feel like we should be put on priority(Of course there is nowhere on the applications I filled out that ask what my goals are). We want experience, we would like to have a paying job that we can actually use on a resume. On the other hand, I think it is very important for parent involvement! So substitute teaching is actually a pretty nifty way to do that.
Here’s a fun little game called “Stuff Future Substitute Teachers Say”
“I want to get my feet wet.”
“I am trying to get my foot in the door”
“I have four kids”
“I am here for the income”
“I was a [..] I got tired of it. Now I am here”
“I retired… I’m back”
I show you these quote to segue into our next topic. Who goes to these things?
Most common? Stay-at-home moms made up a majority of the people. Second Most? I use to do […]. I got tired of it. I want to try this. Third? Aspiring Teachers/Other college students. Fourth? Retired Teacher/Administration.
We had four hair stylist who wanted something new. We had a retired cop who wanted to be an Ag teacher. We had a guy from Denmark who worked up north and then came down to coach soccer. We had a kid who had his bachelors in history and was wanting to be a teacher despite not having a background in education. There was only one other person aside from me and my girlfriend who were actually studying education in college.
Here’s a rundown of useful tips:
Meet your neighbors! Talk to the teachers around your classroom. They can help you if you need it. It’s also just a good way to network yourself.
Make business cards! All teachers have mailboxes inside the school. Show up early and put your card in their boxes.
Get their early! For reasons 1&2 and more I am sure. Just get their early and get to know the classroom.
When it was over, we were all given our certificate. No general test, no state level test. Nothing to sweat there. Along with the certificate, you need to get an application for the school system you want to substitute in. You need to already have references and then you need to make copies of that certificate. Some schools will want a copy. Turn the application into a a principle in the system. They will check your references and select rather or not to add you. If you survive this process, your name gets sent to a person in charge of subs for the county. At this step, you will receive a phone call asking you to come fill out some paper work and do a background check. Once it comes back, Congratulations! You are in the system.
I have turned in my application. I am just waiting on a phone call now. Fingers crossed!
Not everywhere is the same.
The county I went to take the class was just a neighboring county maybe 20 minutes away. There you have to go in front of the board for an interview. In my county, that part does not exist. However, I am pretty sure you are required to get certified, get approved one way or another, and than have background checks. I could be wrong though.
Interested? How do you get stated?
In the U.S.A., there is an organization called RESA(Regional Education Service Education). These people are your best friends. Check to see when they are holding one of these substitute teaching classes. Sign up and pay whatever fee there is. That should be all there is to it. Just attend class on your selected day and figure out your county’s protocol.
So! Does your county or state or county do things differently? Leave a comment. I’d love to hear about it. Anything specific interest you and you want to hear more? Well leave a comment for that too.
I will be sure to update my adventure as I go along.