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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Spokane School Board temporarily raises substitute pay to $200 daily in unanimous vote

The Spokane Public Schools district office at Main Avenue and Bernard Street is seen Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019.   (JESSE TINSLEY/Associated Press)

Facing a severe shortage of teachers, the Spokane Public Schools board on Wednesday night approved a temporary 33% pay increase for substitute instructors.

A late addition to Wednesday’s board agenda, the proposal to increase daily pay from $150 to $200 was approved unanimously as part of the consent agenda.

“That’s a big jump we’re doing on a temporary basis, but there’s a huge need to get more folks into classrooms,” board President Mike Wiser said.

“This is a good step forward on an emergency basis,” Wiser said.

According to the school board agenda, the district has 424 certified substitutes, but only 30% of them are regularly accepting substitute assignments.

The pay raise was proposed by the district as another tool to keep students in buildings during the omicron surge.

Upon expiration of the emergency substitute teacher pay rate set by the state, the rate for substitute teachers will return to $150 unless additional School Board action is taken.

Earlier this year, Spokane Public Schools increased its daily pay for a certificated sub from $132 per day to $150.