Sharpsville Area Elementary School

Sharpsville Area Elementary School

SHARPSVILLE — Substitute teachers in Sharpsville Area School District will see a pay increase.

At their latest meeting, Sharpsville Area School Board voted unanimously to increase daily pay rates for substitute teachers during the 2022-23 school year.

The new daily rate is $120. It rises to $130 when a substitute teacher fills the same vacancy for 10 to 29 consecutive days and $150 for 30 to 89 consecutive days, according to the meeting agenda.

The rates took effect immediately, Sharpsville Superintendent John Vannoy said.

Previously, Vannoy said, substitutes were paid $100 a day, regardless of the number days served or category.

Raising the rates for substitutes was something school officials had discussed in the past to help draw more applicants to Sharpsville schools, Vannoy said.

Instead of school officials contacting substitutes directly when needed, thedistrict contracts with the Precision HR agency to provide substitutes. However, the company — and other local school districts — are all dealing with a shrinking number of available substitutes compared to past years.

“That’s the main issue. There’s a very small pool to draw from, and all the school districts are vying for those substitutes,” Vannoy said.

Sharpsville has about 150 employees, ranging from administrators to teachers and support staff to cafeteria workers.

Although the district is “as close to fully-staffed as we’ve been in a long time,” Vannoy said there were times at the height of the pandemic when there were up to 15 or 20 teachers absent simultaneously due to COVID-19 and other causes.

The worst days of multiple absences simultaneously seem to be behind the district, but aside from the small pool of substitutes, Vannoy said it is sometimes challenging finding substitutes who can cover periods of several weeks, when teachers may have issues such as surgeries, injuries or pregnancies.

“It’s not necessarily long-term, but it’s not day-to-day either,” Vannoy said.

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