The demand for substitute teachers can vary from district to district. Even after you made the decision to substitute you must go through certain steps before you can begin working. There are also ways to help improve your chances of getting called to substitute teach.
You must be certified
Whether you are a certified licensed teacher or a certified substitute teacher, you must have certification to enter a classroom. Most states require a minimum fo 60 college credits but that can vary depending on the state you live in. You will be required to submit to a background check which will include fingerprinting and criminal history check. You may also need a medical exam and a TB test. Don't expect to start right away, it usually can take about 1-2 months before your application is approved of.
Apply to multiple districts
The more substitute lists you on, the more chance of receiving calls for work. Once you are certified the process is much quicker for other districts. The need for substitutes can vary from day to day so being on multiple lists can improve your chances of being called for an assignment.
Make yourself known and network
When you are in a school get noticed by introducing yourself to the principal, secretaries, and other teachers. Getting to know teachers personally will benefit you because there is a chance they will request you to substitute for their class. Eating lunch in the faculty room is a great way to meet other teachers.
Yes, the benefits of being a substitute teacher is that you don't have to take an assignment if you are called. You will never be penalized for not accepting one but saying no a little too often can eventually hurt your chances or continually getting called to work. Schools are looking for reliable and dependable substitute teachers.