Swing Ed Takes Substitute Teacher Management Service into Arizona
- By Dian Schaffhauser
A company with an on-demand marketplace for substitute teachers has begun finding adoption for its service in Arizona. Swing Education has begun adding schools in the state to its customer roster, which also includes California, New Jersey, New York, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington, D.C.
Swing's web application lets schools connect with substitute teachers online without site leaders having to make phone calls. The idea is to offer an option that blends staffing agencies with software. For example, Swing pays the temporary teachers that it works with weekly (though it doesn't include job benefits) and allows them to accept assignments through a text-based notification system or an online platform. There is no cost to substitute teachers for signing up for the service. Those who work for Swing need to pass a background check and hold a bachelor's degree; and although not everybody needs to have a teaching permit or credential to work, the company does advise it.
One school that has adopted Swing's use is Pioneer Preparatory School, a public charter school in Phoenix, which began using the service this year. "We had used a staffing service before, but were always in a crunch for substitutes. When positions went unfilled, we’d have to pull a paraprofessional in to sub, or split classes which increased the class sizes and negatively impacted the students," said Jacki Stroup, the school's associate director, in a statement. "Swing has been a blessing. The subs pick up positions immediately, and Swing builds a rapport with the subs that carries over to the schools. Their subs are responsive and professional. The platform is easy to use, and we’ve been able to keep all of our positions filled."
The company said it currently works with 1,400 schools and districts. Those seeking substitutes cover the cost through either a prepay or pay-as-you-go plan.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.