How To Become a Substitute Teacher In North Carolina

How To Become a Substitute Teacher In North Carolina

Keywords: how to become a substitute teacher in NC, substitute teacher in North Carolina

Becoming a substitute teacher in North Carolina is a good choice for anyone interested in teaching, especially for a short period. Substitute teaching is a unique way to develop your career on your terms because you can easily decide on the type of teaching you want to engage in.

Also, becoming a substitute teacher in North Carolina is the best way to get into teaching or work part-time while pursuing or exploring your other interests. A substitute teacher with a valid teaching certificate can choose to work in any capacity for any number of days or weeks. 

Although most Local Education Agencys (LEA) require potential substitutes to have a high school diploma or GED and also undergo substitute teacher in-service training,

Note that before you can be allowed to become a substitute teacher in any North Carolina district, you will be fingerprinted and also go through a criminal history background. Nonetheless, in this article, we will provide a guide on how to become a substitute teacher in North Carolina and other relevant information you need to know.

What Does a Substitute Teacher Do?

Substitute teachers are responsible for continuous learning, maintaining classroom management, and explaining homework to students. They often provide backup support in the absence of a primary teacher. 

Also, there are two types of substitute teachers, and they both perform similar activities with few differences. Below are the types of substitute teachers and their responsibilities:

  • Long-Term Substitute Teacher:

Long-term substitute teachers provide instructions in a classroom for a long period. They replace a teacher who is on long-term medical leave; this leave includes maternity leave. 

A substitute teacher may also come in when the primary teacher decides to return to the classroom the following school year or later in the year.

The substitute teacher will have to take over all the roles of the primary teacher during their absence from school. This role may include attending staff meetings, making lesson plans, and communicating with parents and students about educational issues. 

  • Day-To-Day Substitute Teacher: 

A day-to-day substitute teacher provides instruction in one classroom for a few days at a time. They often provide help or replace the primary teacher who takes a sick leave or personal day for just a day or one who teaches multiple classes or subjects and goes on a field trip with another class.   

The day-to-day substitute teacher also pays attention to students and classroom behavior and also makes records for the usual teacher when they return to school.

Do Substitute Teachers Get Benefits In NC?

Substitute Teachers are served on an as-needed basis, and they are not qualified to participate in the retirement system, earn a leave, or receive health benefits. 

Also, substitute teachers do not qualify for unemployment benefits because they have temporary status. However, there are other benefits to being a substitute teacher in North Carolina.

What Are The Benefits Of Being a Substitute Teacher In NC? 

Below are some of the benefits of being a substitute teacher in NC. :

1. Flexibility Schedule: 

Becoming a substitute teacher in NC gives candidates a chance to choose their schedule and work in any capacity of their choice, especially if they have other commitments and responsibilities that are very important as well.

2. Inspiration For The Younger Generation: 

Being a substitute teacher allows you to make an impact on aspiring young students. You have an amazing opportunity to inspire and motivate younger generations positively and also support learning experiences. 

3. Good-Paying Jobs: 

The pay of a substitute teacher varies depending on the school district; substitute teachers can earn a reasonable salary while working part-time.

 This is very good and beneficial if you want to pursue other part-time positions.

4. Networking Opportunity: 

Substitute teachers have a very high chance of meeting potential people while working. Working in different schools and classrooms provides them the opportunity to mingle with their fellow teachers, administrative staff, and other staff members who can offer support, advice, and job opportunities.

Provide you with a chance to secure a Full Time Employment teaching career.

Being a substitute teacher can provide you with a chance of landing a full-time teaching career because you’ve gained good experience in the classroom and also made a good impression with school administrators. 

5. Good Work Atmosphere: 

Substitute teaching can be very unique and provide you with a rewarding experience. It is very different and lively each day because you will be able to work with different students and teachers. 

This is what makes the job engaging and fulfilling.

6. Acquiring Transferred Skills: 

Being a substitute teacher will help you adapt to different environments, have different teaching styles, communicate well with students, parents, and other teachers, solve problems effectively, and also manage student behavior in the classroom.

How Much Does a Substitute Teacher Make In North Carolina?

The average annual salary in North Carolina is $39,435 a year. Although this salary isn’t fixed, it usually varies depending on district, advancement, and increased pay based on skill level and year of experience. 

The average hourly wage is $19 per hour, while the average pay per week is $758 and per month is $3,286. 

What Are The Top 10 Highest-Paying Cities For Substitute Teacher Jobs In North Carolina?

Some cities in North Carolina have been identified due to their high salaries for substitute teacher jobs. These cities are listed below with their annual salaries and hourly wages:

  1.  Elizabeth City: Annual salary: $43,046; hourly wage: $$20.70
  2. Oxford: Annual salary: $42,427; hourly wage: $20.40
  3. Monroe: Annual salary: $42,833; hourly wage: $20.59
  4. Matthews: Annual salary: $41,242; hourly wage: $19.83
  5. Kings Mountain: Annual salary: $42,733; hourly wage: $20.55
  6. Marshall: Annual salary: $41,942; hourly wage: $20.16
  7. Kannapolis: Annual salary: $40,883 | Hourly Wage: $19.66
  8. Wake County: Annual salary: $40,602; hourly wage: $19.52
  9. Snow Hill: Annual salary: $40,969; hourly wage: $19.70
  10. Winston-Salem: Annual salary: $40,751; hourly wage: $19.59

Top 5 Best-Paying Related Substitute Teacher Jobs In North Carolina 

The following are the top five best-paying substitute jobs in North Carolina: 

  1. Guest Teacher: Annual Salary: $68,351; Hourly Wage: $32.86
  2. FBI Teacher: Annual Salary: $45,946; Hourly Wage: $22.09
  3. Elementary Substitute Teacher: Annual Salary: $46,808; Hourly Wage: $22.50
  4. School nurse substitute: annual salary: $41,828; hourly wage: $20.11
  5. Cover teacher: annual salary of $42,920; hourly wage of $20.63

How Long Does It Take To Get a NC Teaching License?

Basically, the application process for professional licensure in North Carolina takes about 5 to 6 weeks. Some requirements need to be obtained before being eligible to apply for a Educator’s Licensure, like earning a bachelor’s degree and an EPP. 

After obtaining your bachelor’s degree, the remaining process is simple. 

How To Become a Substitute Teacher In North Carolina 

Below is a guide on how to become a substitute teacher in NC. :

Step 1: Earn Your High School Diploma Or Equivalent. 

Being able to apply for a substitute teaching position in North Carolina does not require applicants to be in the state or anywhere else in the country. Applicants who have a GED or a high school diploma equivalent have the right to apply for a substitute teacher role in North Carolina. 

The North Carolina district expects any teacher who is interested in applying for a substitute position to be at least a high school graduate for a minimum of two years before applying for a job in any school. 

The minimum age required is between 19 and 20. That is, for candidates who do not have a current or expired teaching license, there is always an alternative path to a career as a substitute teacher.

Step 2: Complete Substitute Teacher Training: 

Candidates who are not certified have the opportunity to complete substitute teacher training through the state of North Carolina before applying for a job role. 

Some of these training courses are being offered online; however, they are not free, and they come with a fee before you can access them. Candidates can choose to complete the effective substitute teacher training (ESTT) or effective teacher training (ETT) course before being eligible to apply for a role. 

When candidates are processing their applications, districts, and schools will ask for a copy of this recognized certificate of completion for the courses. This is why it is advisable to consider taking substitute teacher training either online or offline; it will help your teaching career.

Step 3: Earn a Teaching Certificate. 

Earning a teaching certificate is important for any type of teacher. Candidates with teacher certification in the state of North Carolina or another state in the U.S. can easily apply for a substitute teaching position in NC. 

It does not matter if you have a valid or expired teaching certification during your application; you can still make use of it in any state where you earned it. The school or district where you want to apply for a substitute teacher role may ask for a copy of your most recent teaching license during your application process.

Step 4: Share Your College Transcript. 

For candidates who have not earned their teaching certification yet but have completed high school and are still pursuing postsecondary studies, you can provide an unofficial transcript from your college or university instead of completing the ETT or ESTT course. 

Instead of a transcript, you can also submit a genuine letter from your university or college stating that you have completed your student teaching requirements. 

The benefit of these transcripts is that they provide some real, detailed information about your school, such as the completion of your student teaching requirements. also a reference from your academic advisor or supervisor, and also showing the name of your academic institution. 

Step 5: Complete a Health Examination Certificate: 

As an employee who works in the North Carolina public school system, it is compulsory to complete a health examination certificate upon employment.

 The health examination certificate will entail any health issues, diseases, or disabilities the candidate may have, as well as limitations of the candidate’s body sense or system, like hearing implementations. 

The health certificate will also state if the employee is current on necessary immunizations, such as tetanus. You can choose to share this form with the district or school during the application process.

Step 6: Provide Authorization For a Background Check. 

Providing authorization for background checks is a thing that is very compulsory in the United States, especially in the state of North Carolina. A complete background check will be required before earning a job position that comes in contact with children or young adults, which is very important. 

The majority of schools and districts in the U.S. provide a copy of this form to applicants or even make it accessible online. Also, most applicants ask for this completed form before the final submission. If you are applying for a substitute teacher, contact the school or district for which you are applying and get your copy. 

Most districts in North Carolina expect candidates to sign a consent form that allows them to provide proof of their criminal history record with each application.

Step 7: Fill Out An Application. 

Filling out an application is something that is required in most schools and districts in North Carolina. Substitute teachers are required to fill out application forms through an online portal. 

These portals are free for applications to access and upload necessary documents from the school or district.

All districts have a different portal, which is why you should check the district website or contact the district administration directly before applying. This portal will also let you answer any questions or complete any other requirements. 

Step 8: Contact The School District: 

It is very important to reach out to the districts or schools in which you are interested or wish to work before applying. 

Also, contacting the school or district before applying will help you get the necessary information and let you know if you’re eligible for the role. Each school district called a local education agency (LEA) in North Carolina, has different requirements for substitute teachers. 

This will help you ensure that you are on the right path, have collected all the necessary resources and documents, and have filled out the right forms needed to stand a good chance of getting employed.


Becoming a substitute teacher in North Carolina comes with several perks and opportunities. Although you may not get the same benefits as a full-time teacher.

 However, it is worth being a substitute teacher in North Carolina. This article has provided a guide on how to become a substitute teacher in North Carolina, and we hope it is a helpful guide to your search.

Common Teaching Job Interview Questions and Answers
Common Teaching Job Interview Questions and Answers




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