WEA’s Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project

Substitute educators meet a vital need

Substitute educators face one of the most challenging jobs in education today. And, they are crucial to our public education community. They are expected to step into an unknown class, often in an unknown building, on very short notice, and pick up ongoing lessons without the benefit of knowing exactly where a teacher left off or what material students have already covered.

Statewide, the Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project provides professional development, community, and career coaching to emergency substitutes and substitutes - and is led, designed, and delivered by current practitioners and leaders from around the state. The project is funded through a partnership grant with OSPI.

Free synchronous professional development for emergency substitutes and substitutes, clock hours will be offered
for each course. Questions or comments? Send an email here.


Impacts of Equity on Behavior for ESTs and Substitutes
Oct. 26 / 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Register here

Professionalism in Teaching for Emergency Substitutes and Subs
Nov. 7 / 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Register here

Understanding Behavior for ESTs and Substitutes
Nov. 14 / 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Register here

Equity, Misconceptions, and Classroom Strategies for ESTs and Substitutes
Nov. 28 / 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Register here

View course descriptions here.

SubposiumMay2023 (8 of 11) - CopySUBposiums

In May 2023, school district and association staff joined together to share and collaborate ways they support substitutes across the state. WEA's SUBposium was an opportunity to focus on leaders who are providing support and professional development for substitutes. Attendees collaborated, shared and provided feedback to each other. They also received resources to support their locals, districts and regions.

"Substitutes bring in their unique resources, tools, and strategies, that help support the work of our educators. Because a substitute could be from a field outside of education, they bring into the educational environment strategies that could cultivate a mindset for students that may look different than their regular educator, while providing students an opportunity for a continued growth mindset in a way that supports diversity in education," says ​Aneeka Ferrell, WEA member and Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project co-lead.

This event was part of WEA’s Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project.

Next SUBposium: Oct. 26, Spokane. More details soon.

Upcoming SubSchool Asynchronous Professional Development Courses

WEA is excited to offer support for Emergency Substitutes in Washington state with professional development.  We still have 175 FREE memberships to SubSchool. SubSchool offers a dynamic and modern virtual learning platform for Emergency Substitutes to access self-paced courses.

  • Upon registration, you will receive a link to set up your SubSchool account. You will use your SubSchool account to access all courses.
  • You only need one SubSchool account. If you want clock hours for each course, you will need to register with ALL Cvent course links. Please review the process when you register for each course.
  • SubSchool courses are asynchronous. Clock hours will be issued on a quarterly schedule, and SubSchool courses must be completed by 5/31/24.

Welcome to Substitute Teaching – 2 Clock Hours

This is the Introductory course, learners will focus on understanding the role of a substitute teacher.

Register here.

Classroom Management Series – 5 Clock Hours

This series is made up of 4 courses focusing on managing classroom culture and routines. The courses include: Introduction to Classroom Management, Proactive Classroom Management, Responsive Classroom Management, and You as the Classroom Manager

Register here.

Facilitating Instruction Series – 5 Clock Hours

This series is made up of 4 courses focusing on facilitating instruction. The courses include: Introduction to Facilitating Instruction, Teaching a Lesson, Adding the “How”, and When you Need a “What”

Register here.

Trauma-Informed Teaching – 2 Clock Hours

This course focuses on being a trauma-informed teacher in the context of managing the classroom and your role as a substitute.

Register here.


Join our affinity group of emergency substitute and substitute teachers. This group provides an opportunity to be in a common space with fellow substitute teachers. By joining, you have a chance to colloborate within a community setting, and discuss topics relevant to you.

"SubCommunities was born out of these emerging needs for community and connection amongst substitute educators. It provides a space for subs to gather, something that is rarely available to us. It also provides strategies, ideas, mindsets, and skills that are specific to substitute teaching," says Megan Conklin, WEA member and Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project co-lead. "The presence of substitute educators from all different backgrounds learning together is what makes SubCommunities unique and effective. We always eat a meal together because food is integral to community building. We always share stories, model instructional and social-emotional learning strategies and learn from one another. We usually walk away from SubCommunities filled up with purpose and joy."

Upcoming SubCommunities

Lower Columbia SubCommunity, Longview, Oct. 3 / register here

Watch this video about SubCommunities. Send an email here to learn more.

Stay connected

Join the Emergency Substitute Teacher Support Project contact list.