Students learn the steps to subbing 

Monterey County is in dire need of substitute teachers according to local officials. At the same time, being a substitute teacher can help education majors with their career choices.

On April 21, the Making Accessible and Effective Systems for Teacher Readiness Outcomes Project, more commonly referred to as the MAESTROs Project, hosted an information session about the steps necessary to becoming a substitute teacher with Monterey County Office of Education Credential Analysts Michele Hensley and Christina Garcia.

The profession of a substitute teacher, according to Hensley and Garcia, is extremely important as Monterey County, along with the rest of the country, is facing a shortage. 

“I would recommend everyone to become a substitute teacher because we really really need them,” said Garcia.

They believe substitute teaching can show a person whether education is their best career path. They also believe that substitute teaching can show you what level or subject of education you want to teach.

“Maybe you are thinking that you want to be a teacher and then you go to work as a substitute and you find out that it is not really for you,” said Hensley. “We do recommend working as a substitute so you can see what it is like out there. If you have never been in a classroom, you want to figure out what it’s like to figure out if you want to be there or not.” 

They highlighted how the profession has a lot of great benefits from trying out a new career, to having a flexible work schedule, to earning money while going to school, all the way to gaining experience that can be useful during introductory courses in a credentialing program. 

For those interested in becoming a substitute teacher, they highly recommended going through Commision on Teacher Credentialing (CTC), the agency in charge of issuing teaching permits and credentials in California.

However, before using the CTC, they want those interested to know that basic skill requirements have to first be met before applying and obtaining permits and credentials.

The California Basic Education Skills Test (CBEST) is an option they highlight as many permit and credential programs require the test to be taken. The CBEST is a total of three sections: reading comprehension, short essay writing and mathematics. 

The CBEST is available with a free waiver for California residents until June 30 or until the funds are used up. Each section for those who do not qualify for the free waiver have to pay $30 for each of the three sections.

A paper-based exam is an option as well as an online proctored computer-based exam, with results available after two weeks of completion. Hensley and Garcia also recommended the following options for meeting basic skills requirements:

● Coursework Option

● California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET)

● Multiple Subjects & Writing Skills Exam

● CSU Early Assessment Program or CSU Placement Examinations

● Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT)

● ACT Exam

● College Board Advanced Placement Exams

● Basic Skills Examinations from Other States

They as well highlight three permit types and their requirements useful for those wanting to substitute for short to long term periods, all available on the CTC. The first permit they show is the Emergency 30-Day Substitute Teaching Permit. 

The permit allows for those to serve as a regular substitute teacher on a day-to-day basis. It allows one to serve as a substitute teacher for no more than 30 days in general education and 20 days in special education. 

It is only valid for one calendar year but is renewable. The requirements for the permit are the following according to Hensley and Garcia.

● BA or higher degree from a regionally-accredited college or university

● Basic Skills or (SB 1397)

● Completed application (form 41-4)

● Fingerprint Clearance (DOJ & FBI) for the CTC (form 41-LS)

● Application processing fee ($100 or $102.65)

The second permit they recommended is the Substitute Teaching Permit for Prospective Teachers, a similar permit as the Emergency 30-Day Substitute Teaching Permit, however it only allows for one to serve a maximum of 90 days during a school year and can only be renewed once after one calendar year. 

According to Hensley and Garcia, the requirements for the permit are the following:

● Completion of a minimum of 90 semester units

● Verification of current enrollment in a regionally-accredited four-year

California college or university

  • This may be verified by an enrollment letter or transcript
  • The enrollment letter or transcript must specify the number of units

transferred that were accepted toward completion of a bachelor’s degree

● Basic Skills Requirement

● Completed application (form 41-4)

● Fingerprint Clearance (DOJ & FBI) for the CTC (form 41-LS)

● Application processing fee ($100.00) 

The last permit they recommended is the Career Substitute Teaching Permit, a permit allowing one to serve as a substitute teacher on a day-to-day basis while being able to serve no more than 60 days in general education and 20 in special education. The permit is as well valid for one full calendar year and is renewable.

The following are the requirements according to them:

● BA degree or higher from a regionally-accredited college or university

● Verification by the employer of three consecutive years of:

1.) At least 90 days per year of day-to-day substituting

2.)The three year period must immediately precede the date of the application

● Statement of endorsement signed by the superintendent of the employing school district or county office of education

● Verification that the employing agency will offer staff development activities

● Basic Skills Requirement

● Completed application (form 41-4)

● Fingerprint Clearance (DOJ & FBI) for the CTC (form 41-LS)

● Application processing fee ($100.00)

Hensley and Garcia also recommended those interested in substitute teaching in district or charter schools in Monterey County, should join the Monterey County Substitute Consortium. 

The substitute consortium, according to them, allows you to substitute in 24 school districts and 6 charter schools in certified or classified positions in Monterey County for a $87.85 fee that gives one a lifetime membership. The school districts and charter schools are the following:

Charter Schools:

  • Bay View Academy
  • Big Sur Charter
  • Int. School of Monterey
  • MCOE Home Carter
  • Monterey Bay Charter
  • Oasis Charter

Schools Districts:

  • Alisal Union
  • Big Sur Unified
  • Bradley
  • Carmel Unified
  • Chualar Union
  • Gonzales Unified
  • Graves
  • Greenfield Union
  • King City Union
  • Lagunita
  • MCOE (Sped / Alt Ed / Migrant Ed)
  • Mission Union
  • N. Monterey County
  • Pacific Grove
  • Salinas City
  • Salinas Union HS
  • San Antonio
  • San Ardo
  • San Lucas
  • Santa Rita
  • Soledad Unified
  • S. Monterey County
  • Spreckels Union
  • Washington Union

For more information about the steps to substitute teaching and the requirements to the permits, contact [email protected], [email protected] or [email protected]

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