Texas schools ask parents to become substitute teachers amid COVID surge

The Hays Consolidated Independent School District (Hays CISD) in Kyle is asking parents to consider applying to become a substitute teacher as coronavirus continues to surge across Texas

The school district says it sent an email flyer to our parents at the end of last week asking them to consider applying to be a sub. Hays CISD also posted the request on social media.

According to Hays CISD, the parents would still have to apply, pass the fingerprint criminal background check, and do orientation. But, if the principal knows them and recommends them, the school district can waive the requirement that they have at least 30 college hours. 

"We believe that having someone in class, even if we temporarily forgo the college hours requirement, is better than the alternative of having to close schools," Hays CISD said. "We will have a number of teachers and other school staff on hand to help our new parent subs. And, having schools open is important for student academic success, but also for their social and emotional well-being."

According to Hays CISD, the school district typically has 500 subs available in a normal year. 

"We started this year with only about 100 subs because of Delta. We have since increased the pool of approved subs to about 300," Hays CISD said. "But, because of Omicron, the demand is also greatly increased." 

The school district also noted that in a normal year (pre-pandemic), the district would see about 180 to 185 requests for subs each day for the week coming out of Christmas break. This year, Hays CISD saw between 250 and 289 requests each day for the first week back to school. 

Today, Hays CISD had 292 requests for subs.

"So far we have been able to cover our classes," Hays CISD said. "For those sub needs that are unfilled, we have campus staff and central office staff that are helping. Also, we are paying teachers to cover classes if they wish to use their off-duty period."

Hays CISD notes that although the school district is in need of substitute teachers, that it is also important that people who are sick, or who have been exposed, are staying home and doing their part too to keep the virus from spreading. 

"Though it’s challenging to have the increased teacher absences; it’s a sign that people who have either tested positive, are showing symptoms, or who have had close contact, are heeding the call to quarantine," Hays CISD said. 

For more information on what the requirements are to be a sub in the Hays Consolidated Independent School District, click here.

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