There are many pros and cons to being a teacher. While many envy teachers because of the vacation breaks during the year, taking any other days off from work can be a headache.
Getting sick, having sick children, or having an emergency in the morning before work can be a nightmare for teachers. While most professionals can call in sick to take the day off from work, teachers must find a replacement for the day.
Teachers cannot simply call in and say “I will not be at work today”. Teachers must find and plan for a substitute. Finding a substitute days in advance is not really a big deal. Teachers have time to plan appropriate material and activities and can usually find a substitute with ease.
However when something comes up unexpected, things can be different. It can be very difficult to find a substitute teacher last minute. It can also be hard to get activities ready for the substitute. While the teacher may have things planned to do with the children that day, the plans may not always be suitable for a substitute to carry out.
In some cases, a substitute cannot be found at all. In that case, the teacher either must try to come to work if possible or the principal creates a plan for someone else to watch the children.
The principal may use a support staff member such as an educational state or special education assistant as the substitute that day. The principal may also choose to split the students up between other classes for the day. This can only be done if the student teacher ratio remains within limits.
While finding any substitute at all can be difficult. Good substitutes are really hard to find. When one is found, he or she usually remains busy each day or the week.