How To Become A Substitute Teacher In Florida-10Best Steps 

Before we show you how to become a substitute teacher in Florida, Who is a Substitute Teacher?

A substitute teacher is someone who stands in place of a teacher absent, due to unforeseen factors like ill health, family emergencies, maternity leave, etc.

Sub or cover teachers as they are preferentially called can be students seeking knowledge for a career in education, university students seeking internships, or educators looking for a job.

The state of Florida has over 2,600,000 public students and 3,620 public schools and has constantly been expanding its educational system especially because of the recent economic upturn.

This has caused the employment of more academic staff, more emergency or covered teachers to fill in vacant positions, and more so a wide range of opportunities to apply for a slot in the academic sector.

Getting hired would require availability and a great sense of sacrifice due to the impromptu ways of employment, though a flexible schedule and manageable work time will allow substitute teachers more free time.

Full-time teachers who were once Substitutes or interns in the academic field gained a massive knowledge base as it allows you to have a test of what being a teacher is.

Substitute Teachers usually find jobs by first completing their application process and interviewing with their local school district.

This is usually followed by enrollment into an automatic calling system or an internet system used to post available substitute teachers on assignments. (this is district-dependent).

They also can be assigned to work in a specific subject area as needed.

The substitute teacher is usually responsible for the management of the lesson and teaching plans instead of a full-time teacher and helps to maintain and improve classroom decorum and student productivity.

They also observe, to help manage student temperament as the regular teacher does or even better and also can work for multiple schools in a district or multiple school districts too.

Public schools in the state of Florida have their requirements and acceptance protocols for substitute teachers and also, and the Florida department of education does not issue special licensure, certificates, or permits.

How To Become A Substitute Teacher In Florida

In this section on “how to become a substitute teacher in Florida”, we’ll be going through the very simple, basic, general, and most important and conventional means and steps of doing so.

1. Obtain a High School Diploma or Equivalent

If you want to become a substitute teacher in Florida, you’ll be needing this mandatory requirement as it is the only official academic prerequisite for acceptance.

Substitute teaching isn’t a career dream for most people but a step to becoming a full-time teacher so you can apply as an intern seeking real-life experience too.

You’ll be having an edge over other applicants if your transcript shows proficiency in the subject areas you’ll be applying for.

Nevertheless, you’ll also be expected to have outstanding skills which suggest people managerial skills and social stability. Your high school GED/certificate and school remark should also be able to describe you as a person who is academically and behaviorally employable.

Educational programs in Texas partner with local schools to provide classroom internships for a chance to allow college students the opportunity to work in different positions in elementary, middle, and high school.

As you prepare for a career as a full-time teacher, you’ll get the opportunity to work as a substitute teacher in an Internship where you would be able to prepare course materials, shadow teachers, prepare course plans, and many other administrative duties.

This is an opportunity to see the daily day-to-day activities and career schedule of licensed teachers and which preferred grade they will fit into for jobs as teachers.

2. Obtain a Bachelor’s Degree

Bachelor’s Degrees are mainly required according to district requirements in the state of Florida. So the need for a bachelor’s degree before becoming a substitute teacher depends on one’s district, so make research, and visit schools and districts to confirm what their exact requirements are.

Also, for those seeking Internship spots as a substitute or cover teachers, you can run both simultaneously.

Your degree also would help in various ways because you’ll be versed in a particular subject than someone with just a high school diploma or a GED, you must have passed and met the age requirement Which fresh high school graduates might not have met, and must have gotten some tips and learned though theoretically, the best work ethics as a substitute teacher.

3. Meet The Age Requirement

In this step and subsequent ones, we’ll constantly emphasize the fact that requirements vary according to districts and counties.

Meeting the age requirement of the state of Florida means getting to the accepted adult age of 18.

Though some counties may insist on getting to an advanced age of 19, Seminole county insists on 18 for eligibility as a substitute teacher and certification.

4. Apply for certification

Applying for certification has a lot of procedures but most importantly, your application.

This process is dependent on the district and would require some educational qualifications.

You might need to present work histories, a transcript of over 30 hours of credits, and professional references.

You’ll also need to qualify for some registration processes like background checks and which would be used to evaluate you in the areas of criminal records, hobbies, and interests, social media accounts, security numbers, etc.

Upon meeting these requirements, you are just one step from being qualified or already qualified. 

Remember that you can also work In different districts simultaneously and their requirements would not be the same.

But most importantly, Completing Your Initial Application Process and getting an Official Statement Of Status Of Eligibility should be your focus.

You can also submit:

  • A Substitute Application through your local school system
  • Submit important transcripts, references, or other relevant material
  • Meet All additional state requirements

You can check more on requirements and Certification on the official website of the Florida Department of Education:

5. Completion of Background Clearance

Substitute teachers must be required to submit fingerprints, possible criminal records, healthcare checks,  Police reports, and many other requirements for a mandatory screening exercise which has an attached Fee which is also dependent on the district.

At the sight of any criminal history by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), such will be reported to the school district for employment in such candidate’s district and the issue addressed. 

During this check, moral behaviors, an indication of any offense under the outlined offenses of the Florida senate, social violence, defamation, and other characteristics that suggest an outlawed tendency are evaluated.

6. Get Interviewed

If you want to become a substitute teacher in Florida, you’ll be tested on mental and human Intelligence, critical thinking skills, human managerial experience, and accuracy levels through an interview system.

You’ll be asked questions regarding the subject you decide to handle and the hiring manager will try to test you to the greatest length.

You’ll be asked questions regarding yourself, your personality, and your interests.

 You’ll be asked questions regarding your experience and background, you’ll also be asked in-depth and practical questions like how you would handle a disruptive student, and they will also expect practical answers on how you had handled previous classroom challenges.

The interviewing processes are usually thorough as nobody would want to employ a menace, as you’ll be dealing with inexperienced, naive, and sometimes rude students.  or would they love to employ someone low on academic enlightenment?

7. Take a Course on Classroom Management

Upon acceptance, you’ll be enrolled in training where you’ll be taking an additional course on classroom management.

This is a course that examines organizational, classroom, and instructional management plans, designed to create a safe and sound management system.

The topics to cover include instructional assessment and strategies, teaching strategies, safe classroom management, Time management strategies, and courses that help them manage students of diverse cultures.

This is a course designed for preservice and in-service individuals which help to build candidates and make them conversant with the student body.

8. Orientation

Also, every substitute teacher, especially those with zero experience in how the school works from a professional aspect will be required to complete any of the orientation programs upon employment.

Components of an orientation program include:

  • School Policies

  • Code of conduct

  • Specific school ethics

  • Rules and regulations

  • Professional procedures and responsibilities

  • Safety procedures within the school district

 These are made available by each district’s school board, universities, elementary schools, etc. And this training also has online resources developed by the Florida Department of education.

9. Performance Review

There is usually a performance Review that will be used to assess a substitute teacher performance who has worked for over 30 days in a classroom.

Schools in each district usually have an established process for evaluating the performance of administrative, supervisory, or instructional employees in the school district to track student performance academically and improve service in Florida’s public schools.

These evaluation systems are based on good education principles and modern research in professional educational practice and should support the constant improvement of both teaching strategies and student development.

These evaluations are usually meant for administrators and teachers and are conducted annually while new teachers are evaluated twice a year during their first year of service.

These evaluations will assess student performance, teaching strategies and performance, leadership skills, and classroom productivity.

10. Continuing Professional Learning

Continuing Professional learnings are the learning activities and engagements of professionals which in this aspect are substitute teachers, in the development and enhancement of their skills and abilities. 

This is an approach toward sharpening new professional skills and proficiency in the teaching service as a substitute teacher or teacher in training.

This is a long-term commitment toward learning and development and it encourages foresight and the ability to identify opportunities to learn new ways to things, trends, and technology in academics, and improve self skills in one’s profession.

CPD, as it’s usually called, means the totality of an instructional employee’s work. from obtaining new qualifications and learning other aspects of a job, taking training courses, and attending academic seminars.

Skills and Characteristics a substitute teacher should Posses

In as much as substitute teachers need to stand in for absent teachers, they should develop skills to help them manage the classroom regardless of the period they’ll be opportune to guide students/pupils.

Some of these skills and Characteristics are: 


  • Problem-solving

  • Time management

  •  communication

  • Organization

  • Teaching

  • Adaptability

  • Leadership

  • Public speaking

  • Speech

  • Writing


  • They must be passionate individuals

  • They must have the zeal to learn, as the one who teaches, teaches himself too

  • Must be empathetic

  • Must be able to manage classrooms effectively

Substitute teacher’s Salary in Florida

Currently, the annual average salary in Florida for a substitute teacher is $31,000(this is almost 4%higher than the national average).

Although, the salary for every district might not be the same and the salaries will differ according to experience and education.

These are some of the best-paying cities in Florida:

  • Tampa, Florida: $130 daily

  • Miami, Florida: $129 daily

  • Jacksonville, Florida: $125 daily

  • Orlando, Florida: $127 daily


How to become a substitute teacher in Broward

To become a substitute teacher in Broward county Florida, you’ll need to meet all requirements like at least, a 60-hour college course work from an accredited institute.

There are many other requirements that we would list out but bear in mind that they may also vary between institutions.

Also, in Broward county, substitute teachers are referred to as teachers who take over classroom management when the full-time teacher is out on Mondays and Fridays.

Some other requirements and salaries include:

Educational Qualification:

  • 60 college credit hours for a regular substitute teachers 
  • bachelor’s degree for interim substitute teachers

 Required Training:

  • County substitute teacher training course

Renewal Of Certification:

  • Certification is valid as long as substitute teachers work for at least 90 hours annually

Hourly Rate of pay in Broward county.

  • $11.27 per hour  for regular substitute teachers

  • $12.67 per hour for pool Substitutes

  • $27.21 per hour for interim Substitutes

  • $14.08 per hour for substitutes with no bachelor’s degree in a higher-rate location.

  • $15.49 per hour  for substitutes with a bachelor’s degree in a higher-rate location

How to become a substitute teacher at Miami Dade college

If you want to become a substitute teacher in Miami, you are expected to meet all the requirements and training.

You must provide evidence of educational and professional experience, complete the required number of college credits and complete your mandatory training programs which are administered by Miami-Dade college.


Educational Qualification:

  • High school diploma or equivalent

  • 60 credits of college coursework

  • Completion of orientation and classroom training programs


  • Background clearance

  • Test of  English proficiency 

Average Annual Salary in Miami:

  • $25,050 

How to become a substitute teacher in Pasco county

If you want to become a substitute teacher in Pasco county Florida, you need to meet all necessary training and requirements set by the school board of Pasco county Florida 

Some of the requirements are:

Educational Qualification:

  • A minimum of a high school diploma

  • Completing Your online training program


  • Background check

Average Annual Salary in Pasco county: $23,140 

Is Substitute teaching worth it?

Being a substitute teacher is a very rewarding job and is worth looking forward to.

Substitute teaching provides you with the opportunity to meet and understand students of diverse personalities, set your schedule according to your preference, gain resources and experience, earn steady pay, and help develop young great minds.

You’ll be able to;

  • helps students in both academics and  character

  • You can choose your schedule

  • You can help schools in most need of your service

  • You can choose which classroom to handle

  • You can work on multiple districts

  • You can grow and expand your knowledge base and also improve your skills

  • You can network with other school teachers

Teacher assistants and Substitute teachers are different but with a very thin line. They both have key roles in classrooms and they are;

What is the difference between assistant teachers and Substitutes?:

Teacher assistants do not create lesson plans, manage school records, and evaluate student performance but these are core job descriptions of a substitute teacher.

Substitute teachers take charge of the classroom while a teacher assistant works under the supervision of a teacher.

Teacher assistants can also take charge of the classroom for a short while as permitted by state laws.

Substitute teachers can take the place of a teacher when there is a need for it.

Also, substitute teachers provide more information about the class to the teacher in areas of student characteristics and potential.


There can be various reasons to consider a position as a substitute teacher in the education system in Florida. 

The state of Florida keeps expanding its school districts and now is the best time to seize an opportunity in the academic field.

The recent escape from the recession has triggered a positive economic ground thereby making it a factor to allow an addition to the state’s educational systems and the employment of Substitutes and full-time teachers alike. 

Securing a job in the education sector comes with a state of mind insurance because of the constant growth at both state and national levels, allowing educators to build and secure a brighter future for themselves and their families.

Also, substitute teaching looks exceptionally good on a resume and makes the candidate automatically employable, be it a teacher in study or not.

A lot of public and private schools look for teaching experiences in their candidates other than the theoretical aspect of learning.

This is especially admirable and is an edge over others when seeking a job. Other benefits include having time to enroll in academic programs of your own and the flexibility of work hours.

Finally, if you’re planning to become a full-time teacher or not, employers would have no choice but to acknowledge your value and outstanding skills and experience in organization, information presentation, and human management.

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