BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — Schools across West Virginia struggle to keep their doors open. They knew the COVID-19 pandemic would be a challenge, but the biggest hurdle they have to deal with is the lack of substitute teachers.
In Raleigh County, multiple schools had to close in last couple of weeks because they did not have enough teachers. Superintendent David Price said a lot of people could be exposed from just one positive case of COVID-19.
“Under those circumstances, sometimes it does affect a large number of teachers,” said Price.
When multiple teachers are forced to quarantine, school principals have to call in multiple subs.
“As we know, there is a shortage, and it causes us to close sometimes,” Price explained.
They are forced to close the school for a week and return to remote learning, over one positive case.
Price said the state made it a little easier to hire substitutes.
“Provided a waiver for student teachers, that they can substitute as well. That’s been a big help too, and we are already seeing some affects of that,” Price said.
Even still, the Raleigh County School system needs a lot of substitutes in one day.
“We need about 100 to 150 a day,” Price said.
Price believes this will be the new normal for this school year.
“Hopefully, we can minimize it. Our principals take steps to do that, making sure they can cover classes in the school themselves. But I see this being a potential problem all year,” Price explained.
If you are interested in becoming a substitute teacher, apply here.