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. 

Schools, districts and educational service centers may download and print the Substitute License Application Checklist to guide applicants through the substitute licensure process.

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.
  • 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 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.
  • 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. You must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university (official transcripts required). Please select the substitute licensure teaching field based on the postsecondary degree(s) you hold (General Substitute, Education Degree – Unlimited or a Subject Area).
  • STEP 2: Contact a school, district or educational service center. Please DO NOT apply for this license (new or renewal) through the Department's online system until you have completed the following; otherwise, your application will be declined. You must:
    • Complete the employment process at the Ohio school, district or educational service center for which you 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 your license application. 
  • STEP 3: Complete your background checks. You must have current background checks on file with the Department. Please see the Background Check FAQs webpage for more information.
  • STEP 4: Prepare your transcripts. You must submit your official transcripts reflecting your conferred degree (minimum of a bachelor's degree required). Please see the Instructions for Submitting Transcripts before uploading transcripts. You may also view a short video tutorial on how to scan and upload transcripts.
    • If you prefer to mail your original, official transcripts, please use the following address: 

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

    • Did you complete your degree outside the United States? If you completed college coursework outside the United States, you must submit a course-by-course analysis from a Department approved international credential evaluation service
  • STEP 5: ​Complete and submit your 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: 10/8/2021 10:30:09 AM