Stopping to appreciate our substitutes

The substitute teacher identification that Mountain View High School gives.

Walking into a classroom and noticing that the teacher is absent has been an instance that many of us experienced. We do not often think about the person who is in place of the teacher. Substitute teachers watch over us while our teacher is away, but do we always remember to appreciate them? Substitute appreciation day is November 18, 2022, and we should take this day to remind ourselves just how much substitutes mean to us.

Our school has many substitutes. They join us in our classes and allow us to learn without our teachers. The substitute teacher, Mrs. Jefferys, is at our school in place of Mrs. Hart while she is on maternity leave. Jefferys has 25 years of experience with her starting out subbing for elementary schools but now often substitutes for middle school and high schools. She talked about the appreciation the teachers have for substitute teachers.

Mrs. Jefferys, the substitute teacher for Mrs. Hart while she is on maternity leave. (Angelina)

“They leave great lesson plans and, because of that, I think they appreciate us,” Jeffreys explained. “A lot of the teachers leave thank you notes as well!”

The teachers are the ones who need substitute teachers, so this is wonderful to hear that the teachers seem to appreciate them. If we did not have substitutes the teachers most likely would not be able to take a break or go to the doctor as much. Having to deal with multiple students a day is not easy when teachers take a break they probably need it. The students in the class spend the day with the substitutes, and Jefferys talked about the students’ appreciation.

“The students often feel like they can do anything they want, but there also have been wonderful classes,” Jefferys explained. “ The amount of bad and good appreciation from the students is pretty even, but I do wish they appreciated us a little more.”

As students, we should remind ourselves that even though the teacher is gone does not mean we have a free day. Although the substitute is not our teacher, we should give them as much respect as we give our teacher. Remember the next time you have a substitute teacher that they have the authority in the classroom and that there might be work to be done. Substitutes help guide us while our teacher is gone, so we should listen when they tell us the assignments to do. This is something that we students have to improve on to not only be better students but better people. With the students being able to improve on appreciating the substitute teachers, Jefferys commented on how much she enjoyed her job.

“There are not-so-good days but overall I love substituting. I often learn things in the classes and I love learning new things!” she continues. “The classes intrigue me and I love seeing what students learn throughout the years.”

Substitutes not only help the teachers but help us, students. They go to our classes and do their best to teach us with what the teacher left. Teachers and students should remember to appreciate the substitutes that help us when needed.