I’ve had several new PowerWalks observers ask me questions about observing classrooms that are being taught by substitute teachers.  The most common question is should the observation be done?

The answer is YES!

At least 10% (and in many cases, much more) of the instruction delivered throughout the year is provided by substitute teachers. Chew on that fact for a second.

The only chance your campus has to ensure that this 10% is anything more than day care service is by observing, monitoring, cuing, supporting and advising the substitute teachers in your classrooms. 

And I would take it one step further.  I would make it a campus practice that the substitute teacher is visited each class period.  Just a checkup to make sure things are going smoothly, the substitute has everything she needs, and student behavior meets expectations.  

This may seem extreme but here is what I observed at an at-risk high school today in four classrooms being “taught” by substitute teachers. 

Room 1 – Nothing.   Room 2 – Word search assignment.  Room 3 – Crossword puzzle assignment.  Room 4 – Nothing.

What is even more telling, if I hadn’t been on campus, leadership still wouldn’t know that they have a problem.

Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn…

  • Call Jo at (832) 477-LEAD to order your campus set of “The Fundamental 5: The Formula for Quality Instruction.” Individual copies available on Amazon.com!  http://tinyurl.com/Fundamental5 
  • Upcoming Conference Presentations: TASSP Aspiring Principal Workshop (Multiple Presentations), Learning for a Change Spring Summit (Keynote and Multiple Presentations) 
  • Now at the Apple App Store: Fun 5 Timer (Fundamental 5 Delivery Tool); PowerWalks CLC (Networked Formative Observation Tool) 
  • Follow Sean Cain and LYS on www.Twitter.com/LYSNation  and like Lead Your School on Facebook