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Parents have mixed feelings about relaxed Nevada substitute requirements

Posted at 10:02 AM, Aug 16, 2018

It's now easier to become a substitute teacher in Nevada.

This could be good news for the Clark County School District, but some parents have concerns about the changes lowering the bar.

CCSD says they still need about 530 teachers. Without enough substitutes to fill in, classes might need to combine so one teacher can watch more students, sometimes doubling classroom size. That's why many districts, including CCSD, wanted to make it easier to become a substitute.

"We would want anyone there working with our children to have the highest level of experience and I think that's wonderful; however, there are times that that just absolutely cannot occur," said Jason Dietrich, the director of educator licensure for the Nevada Department of Education.

To be a substitute teacher in Nevada there used to be four main requirements. You'd have to pass a background check. You'd need at least 60 credits on a college transcript. You'd need to pass the Praxis exam. Then to renew your license you'd have to get six college credits or the equivalent of professional development. Now, these last two have been taken away making it much simpler.

Parents have mixed feelings on whether this new policy makes the grade.

"It makes me concerned because that's the next generation that's going to make decisions for you and for me," said Melissa Perez, a mother.

"I'm more concerned with background checks to be honest with you, as long as they're safe in there," said Brandon Burpee, a father.

This decision wasn't up to CCSD. After a lot of talk and input, the new rules passed this summer by the legislative commission.

This is the new bare minimum requirement statewide. Individual districts can choose to add extra steps.