How to Write a Substitute Teacher Cover Letter (With Example)

Discover how to write a substitute teacher cover letter with clear tips and a practical example. This guide makes it easy to create a professional and impactful cover letter for your job application.

Getting a job as a substitute teacher can be tough. A good cover letter can make a big difference. It's the first thing schools see when you apply. A strong cover letter shows why you're the right person for the job.

Many people don't know how to write a good cover letter for substitute teaching. They might not know what to include or how to make it stand out. But don't worry - it's not as hard as it seems. With some tips and practice, anyone can write a great cover letter.

In this article, we'll show you how to write a cover letter that gets noticed. We'll explain what to put in it and give you an example to follow. By the end, you'll feel ready to write your own cover letter with confidence.

Remember, your cover letter is your chance to shine. It's where you can show your passion for teaching and your skills. A well-written cover letter can help you get more interviews and job offers. So let's get started on making your cover letter the best it can be!

Substitute Teacher Cover Letter Example

Kaylee Dean
(600) 363-4585
Cameron Mills
Hiring Manager
Kelly Educational Staffing

Dear Cameron Mills,

I am writing to express my strong interest in the Substitute Teacher position at Kelly Educational Staffing. As an enthusiastic and dedicated educator, I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to your team and make a positive impact on students' lives.

With a passion for education and a flexible approach to teaching, I am well-suited for the dynamic role of a substitute teacher. My ability to quickly adapt to various classroom environments and curricula ensures that I can seamlessly step in and maintain educational continuity for students of all ages and backgrounds.

Key qualities I bring to this position include:

  1. Adaptability: I thrive in diverse classroom settings and can effectively manage different grade levels and subject areas.
  2. Classroom Management: I excel at creating a positive and engaging learning environment, even in short-term assignments.
  3. Communication Skills: I maintain clear and professional communication with staff, parents, and students.
  4. Technology Proficiency: I am adept at utilizing various educational technologies to enhance the learning experience.
  5. Creativity: I bring innovative teaching methods to keep students engaged and motivated.

Throughout my career, I have consistently demonstrated my commitment to fostering a love for learning in students. I understand the importance of following lesson plans while also being prepared to implement my own engaging activities when necessary.

I am excited about the prospect of joining Kelly Educational Staffing and contributing to your reputation for providing high-quality substitute teachers. I am confident that my skills, enthusiasm, and dedication to education make me an excellent fit for this role.

Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to the opportunity to discuss how I can contribute to your team and support the educational goals of the schools you serve.


Kaylee Dean

How to Write & Format a Cover Letter Header

The header of your substitute teacher cover letter is the first thing a hiring manager will see, so it's crucial to make a strong first impression. This section typically appears at the top of your letter and contains essential contact information for both you and the recipient.

Your Contact Information

Begin by listing your full name, mailing address, phone number, and email address. Ensure that your email address is professional and appropriate for job applications.


Include the date you're sending the letter, which helps establish a timeline for your application.

Recipient's Information

Next, add the recipient's details. If possible, address the letter to a specific person, such as the principal or hiring manager. Include their name, title, school or district name, and mailing address.


Finally, use a professional greeting to address the recipient. If you know the person's name, use "Dear Mr./Ms./Dr. [Last Name]:" If you're unsure of the recipient's name, you can use "Dear Hiring Manager:" or "Dear [School Name] Administrator:"

By crafting a clear and organized header, you demonstrate attention to detail and professionalism, setting a positive tone for the rest of your cover letter.

Kaylee Dean
(600) 363-4585
Cameron Mills
Hiring Manager
Kelly Educational Staffing

Greeting Your Potential Employer

After crafting a professional header, the next crucial element of your substitute teacher cover letter is the greeting. This section sets the tone for your letter and demonstrates your attention to detail and professionalism.

Use a formal salutation

Begin your letter with a formal salutation, such as "Dear [Recipient's Name]" or "Dear Hiring Manager." If possible, address the letter to a specific person. This personal touch shows initiative and can make your application stand out.

Research the recipient

Take the time to research the school district or specific school to find the name of the hiring manager or principal. If you can't find a specific name, use a general greeting like "Dear Hiring Committee" or "Dear [School Name] Administrator."

Avoid generic greetings

Steer clear of outdated or overly casual greetings like "To Whom It May Concern" or "Hello." These can come across as impersonal and may not make the best first impression.

Be mindful of titles

If you know the recipient's title, include it in your greeting. For example, "Dear Principal Johnson" or "Dear Dr. Smith." This shows respect and attention to detail.

By crafting a thoughtful and professional greeting, you set the stage for a compelling cover letter that showcases your qualifications and enthusiasm for the substitute teaching position.

Introducing Yourself in a Cover Letter

The introduction of your substitute teacher cover letter is your first opportunity to grab the reader's attention and make a strong impression. This crucial section should immediately convey your enthusiasm for the position and highlight your most relevant qualifications.

Begin by stating the specific position you're applying for and where you found the job listing. This demonstrates your attention to detail and helps the hiring manager quickly understand the purpose of your letter.

Next, briefly mention your top qualifications that make you an excellent candidate for the role. Focus on skills and experiences that directly relate to substitute teaching, such as classroom management, adaptability, or subject matter expertise.

Consider including a compelling statement about why you're passionate about substitute teaching or education in general. This personal touch can help you stand out and show your genuine interest in the position.

Remember to keep your introduction concise and engaging, aiming for 3-4 sentences that entice the reader to continue. Your goal is to create a strong foundation for the rest of your cover letter, setting the stage for a more detailed discussion of your qualifications in the subsequent paragraphs.

Strong Example

Dear [Hiring Manager's Name],

As a dedicated educator with a passion for fostering student growth, I am excited to apply for the Substitute Teacher position at [School Name]. With my adaptable teaching style, extensive subject knowledge, and commitment to creating engaging learning environments, I am confident in my ability to seamlessly step into various classrooms and maintain educational continuity for your students.

Why is this a strong example?

This is a strong cover letter introduction for several reasons. First, it immediately establishes the applicant's enthusiasm and relevant qualifications for the position. The opening sentence demonstrates passion and dedication to education, which are crucial qualities for a substitute teacher. Second, it directly addresses the hiring manager, showing attention to detail and personalization. Third, the introduction highlights key skills that are particularly valuable for a substitute teacher, such as adaptability and broad subject knowledge. Finally, it concludes with a confident statement about the applicant's ability to fulfill the role's specific requirements, emphasizing the maintenance of educational continuity. This introduction effectively captures the reader's attention and sets a positive tone for the rest of the cover letter.

Weak Example

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to apply for the substitute teacher position at your school. I have a teaching degree and some experience in classrooms. I think I would be a good fit for this job because I like working with kids and I'm available on short notice.

Why is this a weak example?

This introduction is weak for several reasons. First, it uses a generic salutation instead of addressing a specific person, which shows a lack of effort in researching the school or hiring manager. Second, the language is vague and lacks enthusiasm, failing to grab the reader's attention. The applicant provides minimal information about their qualifications and doesn't highlight any specific skills or experiences that make them unique. The statement about liking to work with kids is cliché and doesn't demonstrate a deep understanding of education. Finally, mentioning availability on short notice as a primary qualification undermines the professional nature of the position. A strong introduction should be more specific, enthusiastic, and focused on what the applicant can offer the school rather than just stating basic qualifications.

Writing the Body of Your Cover Letter

The body of your substitute teacher cover letter is where you can truly showcase your qualifications and enthusiasm for the role. This section should expand on your relevant skills, experiences, and achievements that make you an ideal candidate.

Highlight Relevant Skills

Focus on skills that are particularly valuable for substitute teachers, such as adaptability, classroom management, and the ability to follow lesson plans. Provide specific examples of how you've successfully applied these skills in previous teaching experiences.

Emphasize Your Experience

Discuss your teaching background, including any substitute teaching roles you've held. If you're new to teaching, highlight other relevant experiences working with children or in educational settings.

Demonstrate Your Knowledge

Show your understanding of the school district's values and educational philosophy. Explain how your teaching approach aligns with their goals and how you can contribute to their students' success.

Express Your Enthusiasm

Convey your passion for education and your genuine interest in the specific school or district. Explain why you're excited about the opportunity to work as a substitute teacher in their community.

Connect Your Skills to Their Needs

Relate your abilities directly to the requirements outlined in the job posting. This shows that you've carefully read the position description and understand what the school is looking for in a substitute teacher.

Strong Example

As a dedicated and versatile educator with over five years of experience in diverse classroom settings, I am excited to apply for the Substitute Teacher position at Lincoln Elementary School. My ability to quickly adapt to various grade levels and subjects, combined with my passion for creating engaging learning environments, makes me an ideal candidate for this role.

Throughout my career, I have successfully managed classrooms ranging from kindergarten to 8th grade, implementing age-appropriate lesson plans and maintaining a positive, productive atmosphere. I pride myself on my flexibility and creativity, often developing impromptu activities to keep students engaged and on track with their learning objectives.

One of my greatest strengths is my ability to establish rapport with students and staff alike. I understand the importance of clear communication with full-time teachers to ensure continuity in the curriculum. Additionally, I am well-versed in using various educational technologies and can seamlessly integrate these tools into daily lessons.

I am particularly drawn to Lincoln Elementary's commitment to inclusive education and would be thrilled to contribute to your school's mission of nurturing well-rounded, confident learners.

Why is this a strong example?

This is a strong example of a cover letter body for a Substitute Teacher position for several reasons. First, it immediately highlights relevant experience and key skills specific to substitute teaching, such as adaptability and classroom management across various grade levels. The candidate demonstrates understanding of the role's challenges and requirements.

The letter also showcases specific strengths that are crucial for a substitute teacher, like flexibility, creativity, and the ability to engage students on short notice. It addresses important aspects of the job, such as maintaining curriculum continuity and communicating effectively with full-time staff.

Furthermore, the candidate mentions familiarity with educational technologies, which is increasingly important in modern classrooms. The letter concludes by showing knowledge of the specific school (Lincoln Elementary) and expressing alignment with its values, demonstrating genuine interest in the position.

Overall, this example effectively combines relevant experience, specific skills, and enthusiasm for the role, making it a strong representation of the candidate's qualifications and fit for the position.

Weak Example

I am writing to apply for the Substitute Teacher position at your school. I have a teaching degree and I like working with kids. I can teach any subject and I'm available most days. I think I would be a good fit for this job because I'm patient and organized. Please consider me for this position.

Why is this a weak example?

This is a weak example for several reasons. First, it lacks specificity and detail about the applicant's qualifications and experiences. The statement 'I have a teaching degree' doesn't provide information about the type of degree or any relevant coursework. The claim to teach 'any subject' without supporting evidence seems unrealistic. Additionally, the language is casual and lacks professionalism ('I like working with kids'). The cover letter fails to demonstrate enthusiasm for the role or knowledge about the school. It also doesn't highlight any specific skills or achievements that would set the applicant apart. Overall, it's too generic, brief, and fails to convince the reader why the applicant would be an asset as a substitute teacher.

How to Close Your Cover Letter

After crafting a compelling body for your substitute teacher cover letter, it's crucial to end on a strong note. The closing section is your final opportunity to leave a lasting impression and prompt the reader to take action.

Express gratitude

Begin by thanking the reader for their time and consideration. This simple gesture demonstrates professionalism and courtesy.

Reaffirm your interest

Briefly restate your enthusiasm for the substitute teaching position and your confidence in your ability to contribute positively to the school.

Request an interview

Politely express your desire for an interview or further discussion about the opportunity. This shows initiative and eagerness to move forward in the hiring process.

Provide contact information

Include your phone number and email address, making it easy for the employer to reach you.

Use an appropriate sign-off

Choose a professional closing salutation such as "Sincerely," "Best regards," or "Thank you," followed by your full name.

Follow-up mention

If appropriate, indicate that you'll follow up on your application within a specific timeframe. This demonstrates proactivity and genuine interest in the position.

By crafting a thoughtful and professional closing, you'll reinforce your qualifications and leave the reader with a positive impression of your candidacy for the substitute teaching role.

Strong Example

Thank you for considering my application. I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to your school's dynamic learning environment and support your students' educational journey. I look forward to discussing how my experience and passion for education can benefit your school. Please feel free to contact me at your convenience to arrange an interview.

Why is this a strong example?

This is a strong cover letter closing for several reasons. First, it expresses gratitude for the reader's consideration, which is polite and professional. It then reiterates enthusiasm for the position, specifically mentioning the school's 'dynamic learning environment' and 'students' educational journey,' showing that the applicant has thought about the specific role and institution. The closing also confidently states the applicant's readiness to discuss their qualifications further, implying they have more to offer. Finally, it ends with a clear call-to-action, inviting the reader to arrange an interview. This closing is concise yet comprehensive, leaving a positive final impression and potentially increasing the chances of securing an interview.

Weak Example

Thanks for reading my letter. I hope to hear from you soon about the job. Have a nice day!

Why is this a weak example?

This closing is weak for several reasons. Firstly, it's too casual and unprofessional for a formal cover letter. The phrase 'Thanks for reading my letter' doesn't add value and sounds amateurish. Secondly, it lacks enthusiasm and doesn't reaffirm the candidate's interest in the position. The closing fails to make a strong final impression or call to action. Additionally, it doesn't express gratitude for the employer's time and consideration, which is a standard courtesy in professional correspondence. Finally, the closing doesn't include any reference to follow-up actions or the applicant's qualifications, missing an opportunity to reinforce their suitability for the substitute teacher role. A stronger closing would be more formal, express genuine interest in the position, thank the reader, and indicate a proactive attitude towards the application process.

Cover Letter FAQs for Substitute Teacher


What is the ideal format and length for a substitute teacher cover letter?


A substitute teacher cover letter should be concise and professional, typically not exceeding one page. Use a standard business letter format with your contact information at the top, followed by the date and the recipient's details. Include an opening paragraph, 1-2 body paragraphs highlighting your qualifications, and a closing paragraph. Aim for 3-4 paragraphs total, with about 250-350 words.


What key information should I include in my substitute teacher cover letter?


Your cover letter should include your teaching certifications, relevant experience (including student teaching or volunteer work), adaptability to different subjects and grade levels, classroom management skills, and your enthusiasm for education. Also, mention any specialized skills like foreign language proficiency or experience with special needs students that could set you apart.


How can I make my substitute teacher cover letter stand out?


To make your cover letter stand out, tailor it to the specific school district or institution you're applying to. Research the school's values and incorporate them into your letter. Use specific examples of your teaching achievements or positive impacts on students. Additionally, showcase your flexibility and reliability, which are crucial traits for substitute teachers.


Should I address specific requirements from the job posting in my cover letter?


Yes, it's crucial to address specific requirements mentioned in the job posting. If the school district or institution has listed particular qualifications or experiences they're looking for, make sure to highlight how you meet these criteria in your cover letter. This shows that you've read the job description carefully and demonstrates your suitability for the position.