What does a Substitute Teachers do?

Substitute teachers are responsible for providing instruction and managing classroom environments in absence of the regular teacher. Substitute teachers are required to perform all of the duties of the teacher that they are subbing for. They usually report to the principal at the location to which they are assigned. Substitute assignments can be for just a day, a week, or sometimes for longer periods depending on the absence period of the regular teacher.

Substitute teacher are usually required to have a Bachelor's degree and a teaching credential. Substitute teachers often start substituting on a career path to become a full time classroom teacher.

  • Implement and teache lesson plans and instructions as directed by the absent teacher, or consult with principal or other responsible staff if lesson plan is not provided
  • Maintain a clean, respectful, and orderly classroom, and follow classroom and school procedures as directed by the school
  • Leaves notes or completes a Substitute Teacher Report Form for the regular teacher at the end of the teaching day
  • Communicate in a friendly and positive manner towards parents, students, and administrators
  • Keep records on attendance, accidents and incidents
  • Protect students, equipment, materials, and facilities
  • Ensure the safety of students at all times
  • High school diploma or GED, Bachelor's degree, or between 30 and 60 college semester hours (depending on state or type of school)
  • Valid teaching credential preferred
  • Experience working with children and students preferred
  • Ability to communicate comfortably (written and orally) with students, parents/guardians, administrators, and others
  • Ability to follow and enforce rules, policies, and procedures
  • Frequent walking, standing, stooping, and lifting of up to approximately 30 pounds may be required
  • Must be punctual and reliable
  • Ability to pass a background check
EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
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Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
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Avg. Experience8+ years

Substitute Teachers Salaries

Average Base Pay

$33,588 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
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Median: $34K
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Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Substitute Teachers Career Path

Learn how to become a Substitute Teachers, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Substitute Teacher
Head Substitute Teacher
No Salary Reports
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Substitute Teachers Insights

Read what Substitute Teachers professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Katy Independent School DistrictKaty Independent School District
Substitute Teacher
Aug 15, 2020

“Incredibly flexible: you choose if you want to work each day and where you want to work.”

State of MinnesotaState of Minnesota
Oct 3, 2020

“The Department I worked in used to be a great place to work and I loved my job.”

Matanuska-Susitna Borough School DistrictMatanuska-Susitna Borough School District
Substitute Teacher
Apr 7, 2020

“I was great to work with so many of of the fantastic employees in the elementary schools throughout the district!”

Bellflower Unified School DistrictBellflower Unified School District
Sep 7, 2019

“Also not many opportunities to become a permanent teacher in this district as a substitute.”

Children's InstituteChildren's Institute
Substitute Teacher
Dec 16, 2020

“I’d give this company one star if it weren’t for the Sub Supervisors who are great to work with.”

Alpine School District (Utah)Alpine School District (Utah)
Substitute Teacher
Dec 14, 2021

“There is not enough pay for someone who isn't retired or working another job.”

Broward County Public SchoolsBroward County Public Schools
Long Term Substitute Teacher
Mar 28, 2021

“Flexible schedule if you’re not long term.... can say yes or no to jobs.”

Mission Bay Montessori AcademyMission Bay Montessori Academy
Floater/Teacher Assistant
Aug 4, 2021

“Great opportunity learn about the Montessori philosophy if that is what you are looking to pursue a career in.”

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Substitute Teachers Interviews

Related Careers

Language Teacher
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Esl Teacher
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Substitute Teachers Jobs

Frequently asked questions about the roles and responsibilities of a substitute teachers

When working as a substitute teachers, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are CPR First Aid, English Language, Degree IN Education, Teaching Experience, and Bilingual.

The most similar professions to substitute teachers are:
  • Language Teacher
  • Esl Teacher
  • English Teacher
  • Teacher

The most common qualifications to become a substitute teachers include a minimum of a Bachelor's Degree and an average of 0 - 1 years of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.