Substitute License

The Ohio Department of Education issues one-year and five-year multi-age (PreK-12) substitute teaching licenses under Ohio law1 to applicants who meet qualifications and have been hired to serve in Ohio schools or districts. Applicants, schools and districts may download and print the Substitute License Application Checklist for guidance through the substitute licensure application process.

Following the recent passage of House Bill 583, the Department will be issuing nonrenewable temporary substitute teaching licenses for the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 school years. The 1 Year Temporary Non-Bachelor's Substitute Teaching License allows applicants who do not hold a post-secondary degree, but meet the employing school or district’s set of educational requirements, to serve in the role of a substitute teacher.  

The legislation does not allow the Department to issue this credential until Sept. 23. However, under Ohio Revised Code sections 3319.36  and 3319.101, schools and districts may conditionally employ an individual with a pending application for a substitute teaching license for up to 60 days from the date of application.  

To ensure schools and districts can conditionally employ these individuals between Aug. 1 and Sept. 23, the Department will begin accepting applications for 1 Year Temporary Non-Bachelor’s Substitute Teaching Licenses Aug. 1. The process for employing these individuals will be as follows:  

  1. Applicants submit their temporary substitute license application Aug. 1 or after for the 2022-2023 school year. 
  1. Once the Department receives an application, the local school board may conditionally employ the person as a substitute teacher for a period of 60 days. To hire them, the employing superintendent must believe the person’s application indicates the person is qualified to obtain the substitute teaching license.  
  1. On Sept. 23, the Department will begin rapidly processing all pending applications to ensure they are processed within the sixty-day conditional employment period.  Please note that the period of conditional employment shall last for 60 days or until the licensure application has either been issued or declined, whichever comes first. 

Note: This 1 Year Temporary Non-Bachelor’s Substitute Teaching License is available only at the request of the employing Ohio school or district. It is valid for teaching in any assigned class of any subject area and grade level. Applicants must have current background checks on file with the Department.


Substitute Teaching License (1 Year or 5 Year)

Applicants for licensure will select substitute licensure teaching field(s) based on the post-secondary degree(s) they hold (bachelor's degree or higher) from an accredited college or university during the online application process.

  • Education Degrees:
    • Applicants who have a post-secondary degree in Education may apply for an “Education Degree-Unlimited” substitute license.
    • This substitute license is valid for teaching unlimited days in any subject or grade level, including intervention specialist areas. Note: Please consult with your appropriate special education staff or legal counsel to ensure compliance with federal and state special education regulations and laws.
  • Subject Area Degrees:
    • Applicants who have a post-secondary degree in a specific subject area, such as Mathematics or English, for example, may apply for the substitute license in the related subject area
    • This substitute license is valid for teaching unlimited days in the designated subject area in any grade level.
    • This substitute license is also valid for teaching one semester in any other subject or grade level with local school board approval.
  • All Other Degrees:
    • Applicants who have a post-secondary degree in an area that is not related to an available substitute licensure subject area, such as Interdisciplinary Studies or Criminal Justice, for example, may apply for the "General Substitute" license.
    • This substitute license is valid for teaching one semester in an assigned class of any grade level with local board approval (the employing Ohio school board must approve extended assignments).
  • The employing school board may approve additional subsequent semesters in the same class for individuals who are limited to teaching one semester in a specific class.
  • Career-Tech Workforce Development (CTWD) – The district e-signer must electronically approve the online application to verify the applicant has the necessary skills or education to serve in the CTWD teaching field requested. Applicants must indicate in the application which Ohio school district or career center the application is to go to for electronic approval.
    • If the license holder has education and experience in the career-technical workforce development area directly related to the subject of the class the license holder will teach, the individual can teach for an unlimited number of days.
    • If the license holder does not have education and experience in the career-technical workforce development area the license holder will teach, the individual may teach for one full semester, subject to the approval of the employing school board. A district superintendent can ask the employing school board to approve one or more additional, semester-long periods. 
  • State law does not prescribe a date by which a substitute teaching assignment must be approved.  Therefore, it is the responsibility of the district to determine when to seek board approval.  It is recommended that districts consider setting a local policy to address the procedure and timelines for presenting substitute teaching assignments for local board approval. 
  • Reminder: Substitute teaching licenses are for substitute teaching. Substitute licenses do not meet proper certification requirements under Ohio law2.

Previously Issued Long-Term and Short-Term Substitute Licenses Valid Beyond July 1, 2019

  • All previously issued long-term substitute licenses will continue to be valid for substitute teaching for an unlimited number of school days in the designated subject area and grade levels through their expiration.
  • All previously issued short-term substitute licenses will continue to be valid for substitute teaching in an assigned classroom for up to 60 school days during the current school year through their expiration.

Steps for First-time or Renewal of Substitute Licenses

Applicants will complete the following steps for the licensure application process.

  • STEP 1: Meet education requirements for the substitute license. Candidates must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university (official transcripts required). Candidates must select the substitute licensure teaching field based on the postsecondary degree(s) they hold (General Substitute, Education Degree – Unlimited or a Subject Area).
  • STEP 2: Contact a school, district or educational service center. Candidates should not apply for this license (new or renewal) through the Department's online system until they have completed the following; otherwise, the application may be declined. Candidates must:
    • Complete the employment process at the Ohio school, district or educational service center where they are interested in serving as a substitute teacher; and
    • Notify the employing organization and request the employer's IRN to use in the online application; the organization's e-signer must approve the license application. 
  • STEP 3: Complete background checks. All applicants must have current background checks on file with the Department. 
  • STEP 4: Prepare university transcripts. Applicants must submit their official transcripts from an accredited college or university reflecting their conferred degree (minimum of a bachelor's degree required). Please review the Instructions for Submitting Transcripts and short video tutorial before uploading transcripts. 
    • Applicants who prefer to mail their original, official transcripts must use the following address: 

      Ohio Department of Education
      Office of Educator Licensure
      25 S. Front Street
      Mail Stop 504
      Columbus, OH 43215

    • Coursework completed outside the United States. Applicants who completed college coursework outside the United States must submit a course-by-course analysis from a Department approved international credential evaluation service
  • STEP 5: ​Complete and submit the online application. 

Application Instructions

  • Access your OH|ID account.
  • Click Educator Licensure and Records (CORE).
  • Complete the online application from your CORE Dashboard.
  • See the CORE User Manual for complete instructions.

Related Links

1ORC 3319.226
2ORC 3319.074

Last Modified: 9/20/2022 10:04:35 AM