Substitute Teaching in Retirement Is it Right for You

Thinking about finding a job to earn some extra retirement income? Substitute teaching is an excellent option for many retirees! Check out these seven reasons to consider this unretirement gig.

Substitute Teacher

You may think of retirement as a time to step away from work indefinitely, but as many as one in six retirees are considering heading back to work due to needing more money (55%), boredom (47%), and inflation (41%).

However, most retirees want “unretirement,” to look different than the jobs they worked for decades. They want more freedom, less hours and more control; they want to find something that’s enjoyable while allowing them to earn a little extra income. For some retirees, substitute teaching checks all the boxes.

Are you thinking about becoming a substitute teacher in retirement? Keep reading to learn seven reasons why substitute teaching might be the perfect unretirement gig for you!

  • 1

    Many Career Backgrounds Qualify

    In most cases, you don’t need to have a degree in education or be a former teacher to be a substitute teacher. Individual states and school districts determine their own qualifications, but in most cases, districts are looking for substitute teachers with qualifications such as these: a Bachelor’s degree; a minimum amount of undergraduate semester hours; a high school diploma or GED; or the demonstrated ability work and communicate effectively with students and staff.*

  • 2

    You Have Control of Your Schedule

    As a substitute teacher, you can choose the days you work! This allows you to work around any appointments or activities you have on the calendar—or to take a day off just because you feel like it.

  • 3

    No Late Nights or Weekends

    In the U.S., students go to school Monday through Friday for six to seven hours a day, depending on location. High schools commonly begin around 7:30 a.m. and dismiss around 2:30 p.m. Elementary schools commonly run an hour or so behind high schools. This means as a substitute teacher, you could be off work in time to beat rush hour and get home with plenty of time to prepare dinner. And once the school day is over, your work is done—with no overtime or assignments to take home.

  • 4

    You Can Earn Extra Cash

    Substitute teacher rates vary by state and district, but according to Indeed, the average hourly rate for a substitute teacher in the U.S. is $19.58. Substitute teachers are in high demand, so chances are you’ll have plenty of opportunities to work and earn.

  • 5

    You May Land a Longer-Term Opening

    Once you’re an established sub and get to know the faculty and staff at local schools, you may be presented with the opportunity to accept a longer-term placement—such as a maternity leave or a medical leave. This could mean several weeks or months of work!

  • 6

    Every Day is Different

    One day you may be teaching a class of first graders—and the next, middle school PE. You’ll likely cover many academic subject areas—from math and science to English and art. Moving around so much will keep your unretirement interesting and fun!

  • 7

    It’s Rewarding

    Not only will you help close the gap on the severe shortage of substitute teachers, but you’ll also have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of children by giving them your time and attention. Plus, substitute teaching will help you become more involved in your community, make new friends and enrich your social life.

Want more? Check out our blog, 10 Part-Time Jobs to Supplement Retirement Income

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