How Enriched Qualified Substitute Teachers Contribute to School Culture and Student Outcomes

Do you ever feel like you’re not doing enough to enact real change? I understand. I’ve been there. But then I think about Guest Educators (GEs), or qualified substitute teachers, and I’m filled with pride. In this blog, I’ll explain why I’m so proud of Enriched GEs and how they contribute to school culture and student outcomes.

Guest Educators bring a wealth of teaching and life experience to students in a powerful and celebratory manner. Over the past five years, I’ve had the pleasure of watching them transform classrooms in many different cities. They bring their creativity and personality into the classroom, while also consistently maintaining high expectations.

The thing I am most impressed with, however, is the way they are able to develop meaningful relationships with students even in a short amount of time. Just as the balance of being warm and strict is tough for full-time classroom teachers, it is quite hard for guest educators. One reason for this is that, initially, they may not be familiar with the school or students. And let me tell you, guest education or substitute teaching is not for the faint of heart. It requires an expert handle of soft skills and the ability to quickly build meaningful relationships.

As someone passionate about urban education and equity, I stay informed about effective initiatives for improving student outcomes. One topic that comes up often is teacher diversity, and for good reason. Education leaders and advocates need to understand why racial representation matters in classrooms. Here is a data point from an article by New Leaders:


While this is staggering, people are addressing and discussing it more than ever before.

Finding the Right Substitute Teacher

Guest Educator – Baton Rouge, Louisiana

When recruiting guest educators, we look for experienced candidates with a teaching background who excel at making students feel safe, valued, and encouraged. We have a very diverse and inspiring community of Guest Educators in all the cities we work in and for that I am grateful. We have Guest Educators from all walks of life and different industries. They all have one thing in common: a deep passion for supporting students and continuing their learning.

Research shows that teachers of color have a powerful and lasting impact beyond their classroom. A longitudinal study at Johns Hopkins University says that Black teachers in elementary schools increase the likelihood of Black students attending college and decrease the likelihood of them dropping out of high school. This is particularly the case among Black males.

Relatable substitute teachers are key

Educators understand the importance of demonstrating care and trust to students, especially when it comes to qualified substitute teachers Watching trust develop in a classroom, whether the guest educator is there for a few days or several months, is highly rewarding. Former Enriched substitute teacher turned full-time teacher in Philadelphia, Brandon Hall-Walker, acknowledges the significance of representation. Hall-Walker shared,

“It’s much easier to make connections because we have similar life experience. We understand the student jargon and can empathize with what they go through. There are more opportunities to affect positive change in [the students’] mindsets.”

Guest educators or qualified substitute teachers make an impact

It brings a smile to my face to know just how much our GEs do to inspire the students they work with. This is making a difference! Providing schools with a diverse teacher workforce, especially when school leaders worry about things like flu season and teacher vacancies, is just one way that Enriched Schools contributes to improve school culture and student outcomes. For schools committed to fostering diversity, partnering with Enriched achieves dual goals effortlessly. We seamlessly address your staffing needs while promoting and maintaining a diverse staff. Discover the potential of this exciting collaboration by visiting our Partnership Interest Form, and let’s explore the enriching possibilities together.

Written by Tess Gardephe

Edited by Sarai Solis C.