How to Become a Substitute Teacher in Georgia

Jul 03, 2020

Qualifications for Georgia substitute teachers are set by each school district. When applying for a position as a substitute with a Georgia school, consider looking at the requirements for that school district to see if you meet them. Below, we'll look at some of the more common education and training needed to become a substitute teacher in Georgia.

Requirements for Substitute Teachers in Georgia

Average Salary for Georgia Substitute Teachers (2019)* $24,450
Required Education Varies by employer; a high school diploma is the minimum
Required Field N/A
Testing Requirements None

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics


As mentioned above, every school district has its own educational requirements. On top of that, the requirements may change depending on the substitute position for which you are applying. The minimum state requirement is a high school diploma or its equivalent.

However, you may find that you need a degree for some positions. For instance, the Douglas County School System requires an applicant to have a bachelor's degree if he or she intends to teach over ten consecutive days in a single classroom. Other districts require you to have completed at least some college-level courses. Gwinnett County requires 60 credit hours to be completed but does not specify a degree (credit could be earned towards an associate's degree or bachelor's degree).


The Georgia Professional Standards Commission requires all substitute teachers without prior teacher or paraprofessional certification to complete four hours' worth of training. Some districts offer this training themselves through an online course or facilitate training through a third party. Depending on the school district, these courses must be completed before you apply or can be taken after being hired. Some of these courses include a fee (for reference, the course used by Atlanta Public Schools costs $39.95). To have this particular course count, you need to pass with a score that meets your school district's requirements. Atlanta Public Schools require a score of no less than 80, and you can take the final exam for the course up to four times.

Background Check

Georgia school employees and teachers (including substitute teachers) are required to have a background check completed. Once hired, you must sign a form authorizing the release of information to the school district. You will then need to be fingerprinted and have a background check run by the GBI and FBI to check for any criminal behavior.

Certification Resources for Substitute Teachers in Georgia

You'll find that many school districts pay more for certified teachers. In addition, certified teachers are given priority when hiring, and they can also take over long-term substitute contracts. If you think you may want to consider certification, we've got you covered with study guides for some of the exams you might be required to take.

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