House Bill 4742 Substitute Teacher Staffing Firms



SPRINGFIELD -- Representative Rita Mayfield (D-Waukegan) and Senator Terry Link (D-Vernon Hills) announced the Governor has signed their legislation that will allow school districts to fix their massive substitute teacher shortage problems by hiring experienced staffing firms.

House Bill 4742 was signed by the Governor August 11 at the State Fair in Springfield. The new law requires the Illinois State Board of Education to set up a program that would allow substitute teacher staffing firms to begin operating in the state. Previously, these employment firms were not being used by districts because of technicalities in Illinois’ laws.

The Illinois Association of Regional School Superintendents issued a study earlier this year indicating that 53 percent of Illinois school districts were experienced severe substitute teacher shortages. House Bill 4742 was part of a package of bills pushed by Mayfield to help ease the substitute crisis.

“In our area, many school districts have too many kids trying to learn without qualified substitutes or with no teacher at all in front of the class,” said Mayfield, who served as Vice President of the Waukegan Board of Education and a member of the

Waukegan Schools Foundation Board. “There are great substitute teacher staffing firms that know how to recruit and retain teachers and they have a record of fixing substitute teacher problems at districts across the country.”

Link, the Senate’s Assistant Majority Leader, said the bill guarantees that the staffing firms pay teachers the same wages as substitutes currently earn.

“There are also safeguards in the new law to guarantee that staffing firms are hired in the districts that really need them,”
Link said. “I believe being able to hire professionals is an important tool districts can use because schools are not expert personnel recruiters but staffing firms are.”

Mayfield and Link were the chief sponsors of the bill. The legislation had the support of the Illinois Education Association and the Illinois Statewide School Management Alliance.

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