How to Be a Substitute Teacher in Virginia: Certification & Requirements

If you are interested in substitute teaching in Virginia, you must have earned a high school diploma or GED and be at least 18 years old. Additional educational requirements may vary among school districts. If successful, substitute teaching could serve as a gateway to full-time positions. Schools offering Teaching & Learning degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Substitute Teaching in Virginia

A substitute fulfills all assigned duties of a classroom teacher and can serve in this capacity for a maximum of 90 days. Currently, there are no certification requirements for substitute teachers in Virginia. However, applicants for these positions must meet minimum education and experience requirements. Listed below are the substitute teaching specifications according to the Virginia Administrative Code in addition to state salary info and nationwide job growth data.

Education/Experience Required High school diploma or GED; two years of related work experience or two years of postsecondary education; school district orientation program
Average Salary (2018) $28,400*
Estimated Job Growth (2016-2026) 10% (teachers and instructors, all other)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Requirements

Substitute teachers must possess either a high school diploma or GED. Additional qualifications may be established by each school district or locality. For example, Richmond Public Schools and Prince William County Schools require perspective applicants to submit an application highlighting at least 60 college credits from an accredited college or university.

If employed for more than 90 days, then a substitute becomes a temporarily employed teacher. Substitutes who are temporary employees must have earned a bachelor's degree and/or be eligible for an initial teaching license in the designated instructional area.

Experience Requirements

Virginia requires applicants without any postsecondary education to possess at least two years of professional experience with youth. Substitutes employed as temporary teachers must have previous classroom or substitute teaching experience and have knowledge of their instructional content areas. Substitutes who are assigned to career and technical education vacancies on a long-term basis should hold industry experience and licensure, when applicable.

How to Apply

School districts typically require applicants to submit an application along with verification of education, experience and professional references. Additionally, applicants must be willing to undergo a background check, submit proof of a negative tuberculosis test, and complete the online Child Abuse and Neglect Training. Some school districts also require substitutes to participate in new employee orientation.

Teachers interested in substitute teaching for some districts or counties must include a copy of their current license, and applicants with prior teaching experience can supply a copy of an expired license.

Salary

Salaries, like employment requirements, vary among localities. For example, non-licensed substitute teachers at Virginia Beach City Public Schools received $89.00 a day as of 2019, while substitutes at Hanover County Public Schools received $86.57 per day. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that, statewide, Virginia substitutes earned $13.66 an hour, on average, as of May 2018. Their average salary was $28,400.

Similar Positions

Some districts, like Richmond, recruit substitutes for positions other than teaching and can include:

  • Bus drivers
  • School nurses
  • Security specialists
  • Custodians

Prospective substitutes might also want to consider working as paraprofessionals. Sometimes referred to instructional assistants, these professionals report directly to general and special education classroom teachers. Paraprofessionals typically must have acquired a high school diploma or GED and either two years of postsecondary education or a score of 455 on the ParaPro Assessment. Duties include but are not limited to aiding with small group instruction, observing student behavior and tutoring individuals. An assistant should possess social intelligence, basic interpersonal skills and active listening skills for success. The average salary for paraprofessionals in Virginia was $28,000 as of May 2018, according to the BLS. The need for paraprofessionals is hypothesized to increase during the 2016-2026 decade.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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