Baltimore Polytechnic Institute: a model school for subs
The Associated Press published a story yesterday about teacher absenteeism and schools' increasing reliance on substitutes. "A year is a long time in a child's education, the time it can take to learn cursive writing or beginning algebra," the article begins. "It's also how much time kids can spend with substitute teachers from kindergarten through high school — time that's all but lost for learning."
The story explores the use of long-term subs to fill empty positions, a practice it says is on the rise. It quotes Education Department data showing that the number of schools nationwide reporting that they used substitutes to fill regular teaching vacancies doubled between 1994 and 2004.
Classes with short-term subs often get out of control, especially if the regular teacher doesn't leave an adequate lesson plan. (Subs, of course, aren't required to have nearly the same credentials as teachers.) But as an example of a school that uses subs the right way, the story looks to no other than Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, where a teacher recently injured in a car accident came to school bandaged and bruised each day to drop off lesson plans for the person filling in for him.
One issue that the story doesn't explore: what happens when a school can't find enough subs. I know it's common in Baltimore for teachers to be called in during their planning time to fill in for their absent colleagues.
What's the subbing situation at your school?