Be a sub: Manchester schools seeks to increase pool of substitute teachers

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MANCHESTER, NH – Even in a world where more students are working remotely than inside a classroom, there is a need for substitute teachers. And with a goal in Manchester of returning all students to the classroom when the time comes, there’s no time like the present to bring potential subs into the fold.

“We’re always looking to increase the pool of substitutes,” says Manchester School Assistant Superintendent Amy Allen.

One shift in thinking directly related to the pandemic is changing the process, in the interest in having fewer people moving from school building to school building for safety reasons, which is why Manchester, like other school districts, is looking at hiring district-specific substitutes.

“There are many substitute teachers who sub from district to district. Ideally we’d like to focus on having a pool of substitutes that are consistent and can be working not only specifically for Manchester, but who are focused on working in specific schools.

To that end, the district is initiating a robust training program this year to help better prepare substitute teachers for the task at hand. Right now anyone with a high school diploma can apply to become a substitute teacher. The current rate of pay in Manchester is $85 per day according to the school district website, with those who hold a current NH teacher certification eligible to earn $100 per day. Substitute paraprofessionals are paid $10 per hour.

According to the National Education Association website the need for substitute teachers around the country is universal and there seems no fail-safe solution to retention of employable substitute teachers, many of whom have left the avocation for full-time jobs with benefits. NEA mentions the overall lack of exemplary substitute teaching programs. However, one respite has been partnerships with local universities. Manchester, for example, has been working with student teachers from Southern NH University, Plymouth and other local colleges to fill the need, Allen said.

The immediate need this fall will be for Pre-K and first-grade classrooms, which will be meeting in-person, as well as self-contained special ed and English Learners programs.

“We’ll always need longer-term subs for maternity and medical leaves, and we’re also looking for certified teachers willing to fill that role, especially those with remote-learning experience,” Allen said.

Anyone who is already certified as a substitute teacher for Manchester or who is interested in becoming a substitute should contact Christopher Cody in Human Resources at or email Allen directly at You can also begin the process by applying online using this link.

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Longtime NH journalist and publisher of Loves R&B, German beer, and the Queen City!