New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper


Board of Education to Change Substitute Teachers

In the 2014-15 school year the Board of Education plans to change the way it gets substitute teachers.

No longer will it use Kelly Services to bring in a substitute. The school system hopes to have its own pool to choose from when bringing in a teacher.

“They (Kelly) changed their business model about two years ago which caused some problems for us in getting sufficient staffing on a regular basis,” said Bob Stacey, director of human resources. “We did an analysis of making a shift from Kelly to bringing it in house.”

The City will continue with Kelly Services for next year and begin seeking about 300 substitutes for September of 2014.

In the meantime the City negotiated a new contract with Kelly Services that decreases about 3 percent with a savings of about $40,000.

Jim Sanders Sr. said that the City went to Kelly Services because it had a poor system of getting substitutes.

Stacy said the City will be able to match or exceed what Kelly Services does this time around.

“We have sufficient lead time and will be able to be sure we have well trained Subs,” said Stacey.

Superintendent Kelt Cooper said there are a lot of advantages to the new system. Principals and teachers can now say they do not want a specific teacher and in the long run it will also save money for the schools.

“We have to gear up for this,” said Cooper. “We can screen over 300 substitutes and put it in our system. I never had an outsource system like Kelly Services.”

Cooper said the system will be automated and if at least 300 people are not ready, the City can stick with Kelly Services for another year.

Fingerprints and background checks will be done by the City.

“There is bound to be a substantial savings,” said Cooper. “Principals can be strict to who they want and don’t want.”

Cooper said the reasons that certain school staff don’t want certain people in their classroom or school will give patterns. The City can then use that information to connect dots to prevent someone who shouldn’t be teaching in New Britain.

About 50 percent of the districts use substitutes from in-house.