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Have you ever been a substitute teacher?

I recently started subbing at an elementary school. I'm a recent graduate and am looking for a teaching job. I've only subbed twice so far. Both times, I was called the night before so I told them I could do it. The other day though I got a call around 6:55 in the morning. I could not pick up because I was still fighting with my kids to get out of bed & I had just rolled out of bed myself. They wanted me to sub that day. I would have to leave by 7:15 in order to make it to the school & have a few minutes to read the teacher's plans before the students showed up. There is no way that I could have made it. I still had to shower & get ready and get my kids ready & off to school (and make confirmed plans for after school for my kids) I know that schools don't always know they will need subs until the morning of, but I thought that was pushing it. Do you think it would look bad on my part if I tell them I can only sub if I have at least a days notice? I don't want to hurt chances of subbing or possibly getting a teaching job there in the future. On the other hand, I don't want to get up at 5:00 every morning & get ready just in case I get a call. I did that once when they thought they might need me & then I didn't get the call. On the days that I have subbed, I always get up & get ready before I even attempt to get my kids up. Once they're up, I have no time to get ready so I have to do it beforehand. If you've subbed, when were you usually notified?

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Asked by Anonymous at 6:53 PM on Mar. 9, 2011 in Money & Work

Answers (9)
  • when i subbed, we really needed the money, so i did get up at 5:30 every day and got ready. I almost always got a call, so it worked out...but it really did make for a long day! I could only do elementary...there was no way i could have made it an hour earlier for high school!
    another thing to keep in mind...if you are looking for a job, a great way is to sub in the school you want to work in. they get to know you, and you get to know them. a future employer might prefer a more "willing" employee.

    Answer by happy2bmom25 at 7:04 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • When I was subbing, I had the same issue. You aren't alone here. I typically knew days or weeks in advance of an assignment, and I was up front with the schools (most of which new me personally, so understood I had young children) that I could only work if I knew at least the night before so that I could arrange child care for my girls.

    Best of luck to you! Good luck finding a permanent position!

    Answer by Mom-2-3-Girlz at 7:06 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • The school knows you might not be able to, that's why they haev a list. You could tell them you can only do it the night before, and if they are happy with your teaching, they'll call you again. There are many times where they know the night before, but sometimes they just need someone that day. Not your fault and they know that.

    Answer by SherriPie at 7:52 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • When I subbed the calls came at 6:30 AM. There was no notice given the night before.

    Answer by elizabr at 7:55 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • I have been subbing on and off for the past 7 years. This year is my first year of subbing full time. Do y'all not have a sub system? If not, then what I suggest is to go ahead and get up like you are going to work. Chances are you will only have to do this for a week or two and the sub calls will start flowing in once they see that you are serious about this. I normally stay booked up to 3 weeks in advance. If you don't have a job for that day, how about volunteering for an hour or two at the school. They will notice you and you will have a better chance of getting your foot into the door of a long term sub position or a full time permanent position. Also, consider subbing at other schools/districts if at all possible. If you have any questions, please feel free to pm me. Good Luck!


    Answer by JeremysMom at 9:40 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • I didn't start saying "only call me at night' until I was established as a sub. After i became established, I was booked days, weeks and even months in advanced and I didn't have to worry about those early morning calls. For now, I'd get up just in case. Once they realize that you are a good sub they will start booking you in advance and then you won't look bad if you say "hey, if I'm not already booked, can you only call me the night before?"

    Answer by layh41407 at 9:52 PM on Mar. 9, 2011

  • Na take it easy. Definitely you would require a day's notice to plan for your day, for kids, your teaching plans....

    Answer by AnuMeha at 6:23 AM on Mar. 10, 2011

  • When I subbed, it was a computer system and you could set it up so they only called at night. I didn't get as many jobs that way to start out, but once I started getting jobs and getting to know the other teachers they would always call me if they knew they were going to be out so it wasn't an issue.

    Answer by missanc at 2:21 PM on Mar. 10, 2011

  • I have never subbed, but a friend of mine did. She was notified that morning and never knew in advance when or if she'd be called.

    Answer by HotMama330 at 12:18 PM on Mar. 11, 2011

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