Educators that hold a valid document issued based on completion of a bachelor's degree and the basic skills requirement are authorized to serve as day-to-day substitutes.  Valid credentials that were issued prior to February 1, 1983 and required the holder to complete a bachelor's degree and professional preparation program are also authorized to serve as day-to-day substitutes, even though the holder may not have met the basic skills requirement.

Substitute teachers have limitations regarding how long they are able to serve in a substitute capacity in a school year for any one teacher of record:

  • No more than 30 cumulative days in any one general education classroom; and
  • No more than 20 cumulative days in any one special education classroom.

This rule includes fully credentialed teachers serving as substitutes, unless that teacher is serving as a substitute in the subject or disability area(s) authorized by their credential; such fully credentialed teachers can serve as substitutes in classes that match their area of certification indefinitely.

Passage of Assembly Bill (AB) 167 temporarily extends substitute teaching limitations for the 2021-22 school year. Refer to Credential Information Alert (CIA) 21-04 for more information.

Executive Order N-3-22 offers County Offices of Education temporary staffing flexibilities in response to staffing shortages related to Omicron-driven COVID-19 cases. These provisions expire March 31, 2022. Refer to Coded Correspondence 22-01.

The 2022 Education Omnibus Budget Trailer Bill continued the extension of the number of cumulative days a substitute teacher can serve in the classroom for one teacher of record until July 1, 2023.  The following substitute timeframes apply until that date:

  •  Holders of any Commission-issued document that authorizes substitute teaching in a general or special education classroom, including: 1) substitute permits, 2) full teaching credentials, and 3) emergency permits may serve for 60 cumulative days in either general or special education settings;
  • Holders of any Commission-issued document that authorizes substitute teaching in a career technical education classroom, including: 1) Career Technical Education credentials, and 2) Career Technical Education substitute permits can substitute for 60 cumulative days in CTE settings.

Substitute TeachingEd Code/Reg
Substitute teaching in a special education classroomEducation Code 56061(a)
Other documents authorizing substitute serviceTitle 5 80025.3
Teacher Permit for Statutory LeaveTitle 5 80022
Emergency 30-Day Substitute Teaching PermitTitle 5 80025
Emergency Career Substitute Teaching PermitTitle 5 80025.1
Emergency Substitute Teaching Permit for Prospective TeachersTitle 5 80025.2
Emergency Designated Subjects Career Technical Education Substitute PermitTitle 5 80025.5
Holders of Full-Time Voc. Ed., Full-Time CTE, or CTE may serve as a substitute in technical, trade or vocational coursesTitle 5 80034.5(a)
Full-Time Adult Education Credential holder may substitute in classes organized primarily for adultsTitle 5 80034.5(b)
Updated December 29, 2022