There's a statewide shortage of substitute teacher's aides, so the Clinton Community School District decided to relax the education level required for the job.
Substitute teacher's aides will no longer need a college education. The job now requires a clear background check and a high school diploma.
"If we could get 20 to 30 people more than what we currently have, that would be huge for us. Since the first of September, I don't think there hasn't been a day where we haven't been short of paraeducators" says Superintendent Gary DeLacy.
Substitute teacher's aides are considered a category of paraeducators.
"Paraeducators are the ones that will work alongside teachers in special education rooms, that provide support. They could (provide) one on one (assistance,)... they could also be the ones that are supervising the hallways or at lunchtime or they might be an assistant in the library. It also does include your bus drivers and your secretaries," says DeLacy.
In the past three months alone, paraeducator services in the Clinton Community School District have been down by almost half.
He hopes the change in job requirements will attract more people to the job.
“It's a problem because it really ultimately hurts students. When you're shuffling people around or you have positions that are not filled, it affects the operations of the school and in some cases it's affecting direct instructions of the students,” DeLacy says.
There is a shortage of substitute teachers in the district as well.
For those jobs, the state requires at least a four-year degree and a substitute teaching license.