Escambia County School District increases pay for all substitute teachers
The Escambia County School District has increased pay for all substitute teachers in the hopes that higher wages will help attract more educators to the job.
The school board approved the higher salaries last month, and they went into effective Sept. 1. On average, the new pay rates amount to a 15.6% increase for substitutes across all educational levels.
"We hope that the salary increase for substitute teachers will assist our daily instructional activities at all school sites," said Assistant Superintendent for Human Resource Services Keith Leonard in a news release. "Our substitute teachers are an important part of our academic instruction on a daily basis. We appreciate our substitute teachers and the salary increase is one small way to provide an example of that appreciation."
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Now, a substitute teacher with a high school diploma will be paid $75 per day, an increase of more than $10 from the previous rate. A substitute who has earned 60 college credit hours or an associate degree will receive $85 per day, an increase of $13.
Substitute teachers with a bachelor's or higher degree will be paid $95 per day (an increase of $12) and those with a master's degree or doctorate will receive $105 per day (an increase of $22). A substitute teacher on a long term-assignment who meets specific requirements will receive $130 per day, the same rate as before.
The pay increases are expected to cost the district a projected $400,000 to $500,000 this school year.
School district officials first unveiled a proposal to raise substitute teacher pay district-wide in July.
The proposal came after a school year when substitute teachers were in particularly high demand. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and contact tracing, more than 45,000 teacher absences needed to be covered in the 2020-2021 school year. In a normal year, that number is about 38,000 or 39,000.
In February, the district launched a pilot pay program at five schools with a fill rate of no more than 60% to test if higher wages would have a positive effect on the fill rate. The program, which operated for the final 12 weeks of the school year, determined that higher wages resulted in higher fill rates, particularly in elementary and high schools.
To apply for a substitute teaching position with the district, visit bit.ly/3yZzE5S.