OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Substitute teachers are becoming a scarce commodity for school districts as they continue to emphasize the importance of in-person learning this school year.

Oklahoma Education Association president Katherine Bishop says she is concerned about the lack of submarines.

“A lot of replacements have not returned,” she said. “In talking to the districts of the state, they may have had hundreds of substitutes in their substitute pools in the 1950s.”

Bishop says this makes it harder for staff during a normal school week.

“If a site doesn’t have enough replacements for the day, teachers forgo the time allocated to cover that class,” she said.

“You could see the exhaustion on their faces. They are duplicating. They teach in person, they put courses online. They cover the courses.

Mustang Public Schools executive director of human resources Chris Tobler agrees.

“There aren’t a lot of people who want to substitute themselves during a pandemic,” he said. “Our fill rates are going down to a certain extent, so our teacher absences are also on the rise, so it’s a pretty complex issue. “

Mustang is one of the few local school districts to implement increases.

“The superintendent and the school board recently launched an increase for submarines of all types,” he said. “We believe this will create a positive trend. “

Putnam City Public Schools are implementing their own incentives.

The district spokesperson said it offers a sponsorship bonus to any employee who recruits new submarines, and any fully vaccinated submarine that completes a required number of hours will receive a stipend of $ 1,000. .