Let me start by saying, a substitute teacher is not the same as an assistant teacher. While the latter is under the direct supervision of the classroom teacher, the former is fully authorized to perform the functions of a regular classroom teacher.
A substitute teacher is a professional who is tasked to perform the instructional and classroom management for students when their regular classroom teacher is absent for a day or longer periods of time.
Their duties include but not limited to lesson plan interpretation, taking attendance, explaining homework, and maintaining classroom cleanliness following a schedule and managing behaviour.
These are the roles of a substitute teacher:
- Adapt teaching methods to fit the needs of each individual student
- Adhere to the curriculum and lesson plans assigned by the regular teacher.
- Assign and explain the homework.
- Complete a report form, including absences, progress with lesson plan, disciplinary actions, positive experiences, etc.
- Comply with all school regulations and policies at all times.
- Ensure classroom and work is kept clean and orderly.
- Follow procedures and achieve lesson goals.
- Oversee students outside of the classroom including in the hallways and cafeteria.
- Oversee the normal classroom rhythms and activities.
- Supervise students in and out of the classroom, including in the halls, on the playground and in the cafeteria
- Take attendance and document daily notes.
What exactly are substitute teachers supposed to do: Substitute teachers are to ensure continuity in instruction. This means they follow any lesson plans and instructions left by the classroom teacher. The most important responsibility of a substitute teacher is to maintain classroom discipline and to carry on the classroom procedures as if he/she were the regular teacher.