A short video clip focused on overcoming substitute teacher shortages
Hear how Lindsey Wickersham, Induction Coordinator of Ontario-Montclair School District, uses GoReact to keep teachers in the classroom, reducing the need for substitute teachers and leading to financial savings.
So after COVID, we all know that changed everything, but in terms of substitute teachers, when a teacher got sick, they had to be out for a certain number of days. So we were short substitute teachers within our district to the point where all of us here at the district office were being asked to sub a certain number of days a week because there was such a crisis with substitutes, and our subs cost quite a bit of money per day. So what we found is that with GoReact, well, let me back up a little bit. The first priority of substitutes goes for illness. So if we have a training or a PD or mentor observations in this case, if there were more teachers that were out for medical reasons or sickness, those subs got canceled for those trainings or observations and put towards illness. So that was priority number one.
So then we had teachers who were creating lesson plans thinking that their mentor was going to come and observe them, mentors who were creating lesson plans for their day out for a sub that would get canceled sometimes the day before or the day of. And so that would just throw everybody off. So by using GoReact, it took that away in the fact that now the mentor could observe the candidate at their own time after school or during their prep or whatever because the candidate got a record, upload, and then the mentor got to leave feedback in that sense. So not only was it a financial savings for the district because of the increasing cost of what it cost to pay for a sub, but it also allowed the teachers to be observed and the mentors to observe them without having to physically leave their classrooms.
And then I think, well, number one, it’s a little bit safer too. So having the mentor not be there in person sometimes is a little bit of a relief for the candidate. And although our sub situation has improved over the past year or so, there’s still things that happen and there’s still sicknesses and they will always get pulled to cover illnesses first. So it’s not officially like a backup plan, but it provides us a peace of mind saying like, okay, my sub got pulled, I want you to record instead, and we can still accomplish the same task.