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Helping school districts

We knew it was coming, but some Ohio school districts still find themselves scrambling as another COVID-19 surge leaves them short of staff … and substitutes.

Earlier this month in the Lakota Schools District near Cincinnati, nearly 5% of the 1,400 staff members were out on one day.

“We are hiring substitute teachers, cafeteria, intervention aides. We have kids that are in college now that we can bring in as subs that are helping us out while they’re on winter break,” Matt Miller, superintendent of Lakota Schools, told another media outlet.

There and in other districts the requirements for those willing to serve as substitute teachers are changing.

“A lot of people don’t know the rules have changed in Ohio, and you don’t need a teaching license,” said Tracey Carson, spokesperson for Mason City Schools in Warren County, according to WLWT.

Locally, school districts have advertised for substitute teachers, cafeteria workers, aides and bus drivers, among other positions. All of those staff are needed to keep a district running. And to attract them, some school boards are raising their daily pay rate as well as changing requirements.

Getting creative is important for school districts. It may show districts that thinking outside the box can be better for students.

Meanwhile, those who believe they can help should look into the requirements for becoming a substitute or other staff member for their local districts. Many of them need all the help they can get.

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