HB 583 Reauthorizes Substitute Teacher Flexibility, But Board Action is Needed (And there is a Significant Caveat)

The General Assembly has passed legislation (HB 583) again permitting boards of education to relax the requirements for employing substitute teachers.  Boards will need to take action (again) to establish their own requirements for substitute teachers.  Pepple & Waggoner has prepared draft resolutions that align with H.B. 583’s requirements.

This legislation comes with one significant caveat – the legislation’s effective date is September 23, 2022, which is after the school year begins.  This blog discusses how the legislation’s effective date may impact your district’s employment of substitutes at the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.

Boards May Establish Their Own Requirements

Under permanent law, an individual must have a post-secondary degree to become a substitute teacher.  However, legislation has permitted boards to establish their own education requirements for limited periods over the past two school years.

HB 583 is the latest legislation – and will permit boards of education to establish their own educational requirements for the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 school years.  Like prior legislation, HB 583 does not restrict boards of education from varying education requirements by grade or subject area.  Additionally, HB 583 conditions employment on the substitute teacher being “deemed of good moral character,” and successfully completing an R.C. 3319.39 criminal background check.  This is reflected in the Pepple & Waggoner model resolution.

When adopting new education requirements, boards should ensure that any new requirements do not conflict with board policy, administrative guidelines, or existing job descriptions, and resolutions should be worded accordingly.

A Significant Caveat; HB 583’s Effective Date

However, boards are cautioned that HB 583’s flexibility will not be immediate.  Unlike prior legislation, HB 583 does not include an emergency clause (which would have made the legislation effective immediately upon the Governor’s signature).  Instead, HB 583 will become effective on September 23, 2022 (90 days after the Governor’s signature).  This September 23, 2022 effective date means that the legal authority to employ substitutes pursuant to the District’s own education requirements will not begin until after the 2022-2023 school year begins.

Boards relying on HB 583’s flexibility must be careful that their employment and use of substitutes align with the legislation’s language.  Based on a conservative interpretation of the legislation, boards will need to wait until September 23, 2022 to employ and use substitute teachers.

Pepple & Waggoner has prepared a draft resolution that aligns with HB 583’s language and accommodates the delayed effective date.  If your board wants to consider the model resolution or if you have questions about HB 583’s effective date, do not hesitate to contact us.

Brian DeSantis may be reached at BDeSantis@pepple-waggoner.com

Follow on Twitter @BrianDeSantisPW