teacher 082321PARK FOREST – A comprehensive proposal by State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) aimed at eliminating Illinois’ teacher shortage was signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker.

“The teacher shortage in Illinois is a crisis, and this new law offers strategies to reverse the trend,” Joyce said. “As school districts return to in-person learning this fall, this new law will grant retired teachers the ability to substitute teach for more hours without impairing their retirement status.”

Currently, Illinois law allows retired teachers to substitute teach for up to 120 days or 600 hours without jeopardizing their retirement status. Because retired teachers often return to work as substitute teachers, Joyce’s initiative would create a yearly, rather than lifetime limit: Retired teachers could substitute teach for 100 days or 500 hours each school year beginning July 1, 2023.

“This new law will allow school districts to increase the pool of qualified substitute teachers while allowing former teachers to maintain their retirement status, ensuring the most qualified professionals are teaching our children,” Joyce said.  

The legislation – Senate Bill 1989 – was signed into law Friday and takes effect immediately.