A substitute teacher is an education professional who teaches classes when a primary teacher is not available. Depending on the circumstances, a substitute may fill in for the regular teacher for only one or two days or might instruct a class for longer periods of time. To choose the best substitute teaching jobs, it is helpful to first determine which degrees or certifications are necessary to practice in your region. It can also be good to consider the kind of schools at which you would like to substitute teach and the courses in which you might be able to instruct.
The qualifications necessary to enter substitute teaching jobs vary from school to school and from location to location. In some areas, there are public schools and private schools. Public school positions are normally regulated by government agencies or branches that decide on essential degrees or certifications necessary for substitute teachers. When certification is essential, there is often a prerequisite test or program of study the aspiring substitute teacher must take in order to show proficiency in required skills.
Private schools may also have to adhere to certain government requirements when it comes to substitute teaching jobs, though they may also create their own requirements. In either case, it can be helpful to learn about the necessary credentials in order to choose the best jobs. Many educators in this profession acquire a number of potential credentials in order to be able to have access to the most teaching opportunities and to strengthen their resumes.
In some cases, certain substitute teaching jobs require that a teacher have experience or education in a particular subject. For example, a substitute teacher who takes over a chemistry class for more than a few days may be required to have a degree in science education. When a substitute is instructing a class for only a day or two, however, he or she may only be expected to watch over the class and distribute assignments that are designed by the primary instructor. In this case, education or experience in a specific discipline may not be necessary.
Substitute teaching jobs may also vary in terms of grade level. The best jobs for you are probably those that allow you to work with age groups with which you feel most comfortable. If your education or experience has shown that you are proficient in working with students between the ages of six and ten, you can seek out jobs that allow you to substitute teach in elementary or primary schools. Likewise, if your experience and education has demonstrated your ability to work with older students, the best substitute teaching jobs may be those that place you in a high school. Even those who do not have traditional teaching credentials may find substitute teaching positions in afterschool or childcare programs.