Illinois to license short-term substitutes to combat teacher shortage

SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois State Board of Education mounts a new effort to address the statewide teacher shortage with a new program that goes into effect today: it's called the 'Short-Term Substitute Teacher's License'.

The plan helps recruit educators who were close to graduating, or had a degree or license from another state, but narrowly missed the cut to be qualified to teach in Illinois.

One-in-five open teaching jobs went unfilled last year, in part because the state turned candidates away.

"Our system will be set up to allow educators to apply for a new type of license," Emily Fox, the state's Administrator for Education Effectiveness explained. "It's a short term substitute teaching license. The application fee is only $25 and it can be refunded after the educator teaches 10 days in the classroom. Our goal is to get more substitute teachers in the classroom in Illinois."

The program will also allow retired teachers to come back into the classroom and fill in for a short period without losing their retirement benefits.


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