Substitute teacher shortage forcing school districts to go online

Published: Nov. 10, 2021 at 8:58 PM CST
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FLORENCE, Ala. (WAFF) - School leaders in Florence City School District and Lauderdale County have had to shift plans in the last few weeks because there aren’t enough substitute teachers, leaving both schools with only one option: going virtual on Friday.

“We’ve had teachers covering multiple teachers classes, administrators covering classes,” said Florence Superintendent Dr. Jimmy Shaw,

Dr. Shaw said this has been an ongoing problem.

“We’ve been hit hard with a substitute teacher shortage. Not just now. We’ve been battling substitute teacher shortages all year long,” said Shaw,

A survey from Education Week found that 40% of district leaders and principals would call their staff situation “severe” or “very severe” this year.

Lauderdale County schools are also feeling those effects.

Superintendent Jerry Hill released a statement saying they will be virtual on Friday too because of sub shortage.

Dr. Shaw said they’ve tried to come up with ways to bring in more subs.

“The mitigation was us trying to hire our own permanent subs for $20 an hour and us trying to bring in retired teachers at $30 an hour. That’s one of the ways that we’ve tried to do that,” said Shaw.

He said although the problem still persists their number one goal is to continue to educate the students.

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