A Texas school district asked parents to apply to be substitute teachers as COVID-19 cases surge.
Hays Consolidated Independent School District made the request to parents amid staffing shortages.
The district said a college credit requirement can be waived if the principal recommends a parent.
A staffing shortage caused by a surge in COVID-19 cases has prompted a Texas school district to ask parents to become substitute teachers.
Hays Consolidated Independent School District in Kyle, Texas, sent an email to parents last week encouraging them to apply, spokesman Tim Savoy told Insider on Thursday.
The school district also posted about the opportunity for parents to become sub teachers on its Facebook page last week, saying it is now hiring "certified and non-certified guest teachers."
Would-be parent-teachers would have to apply for the position and pass a criminal background check, but a requirement of having at least 30 hours of college credit can be waived if the principal recommends the parent, Savoy said.
"We believe that having someone in class, even if we temporarily forgo the college hours requirement, is better than the alternative of having to close schools," the district said, according to FOX 7 Austin.
Hays CISD currently has 318 active student COVID-19 cases and 61 cases among staff members, with cases rising this week, according to an online dashboard.
"If we got to a point where we didn't have substitutes, we would basically probably have to send everybody home, and they'd have to make up the time," Savoy told CBS Austin.
Savoy added that the school district is "making an extra push for our parents, because those are going to be the folks that the principals are interacting with regularly, and they're able to say, 'hey, yeah, I know this parent, they're great.'"
The school district usually has about 500 substitute teachers available in a typical year, but the district was down to about 100 subs last year due to the Delta coronavirus variant.
"We have since increased the pool of approved subs to about 300," Savoy told Insider, but due to the Omicron coronavirus variant, "the demand is also greatly increased."
"So far we have been able to cover our classes. For those sub needs that are unfilled, we have campus staff and central office staff that are helping," said Savoy. "Also, we are paying teachers to cover classes if they wish to use their off-duty period."
Savoy told Insider that so far, three parents have signed up to be subs.
"Every little bit helps us keep schools open," he said.
School districts across the US have been facing staffing shortages due to a record-breaking increase in new cases of COVID-19 driven by the highly transmissible Omicron variant.
Read the original article on Insider