Guest Teaching & Subbing at TCAPS

Traverse City Area Public Schools is seeking qualified candidates to serve as guest teachers and substitutes for the current school year. 

TCAPS has Increased Rates for Guest Teachers and Substitute Assistants/Aides!  

Do you want to make your own schedule and support your local school district during a critical time? Becoming a TCAPS Guest Teacher or Substitute Assistant/Aide could be the perfect opportunity for you! 

Hourly rates for TCAPS Guest Teachers and Substitute Assistants/Aides start at $18.27 per hour and go up to $31.00 for some assignments. As a Guest Teacher or Substitute Assistant/Aide, you can enjoy:

  • A flexible work schedule - choose where and when you work through our district’s online substitute scheduling system (External LinkESS Midwest)! 
  • Opportunities to develop valuable skills, impact students, and build meaningful relationships.
  • Virtual training, as well as on-the-job development and resources.
  • Hourly premium of $2 on Mondays and Fridays.

For more information, call the Guest Teacher office at 231-933-1714.

Guest Teaching Requirements:

To guest teach in Michigan, the following are required:

  • A minimum of 60 semester credit hours from a two- or four-year accredited college or university.
  • Passing of a federal and state fingerprint background check.
  • Completion of the ESS Midwest, Inc. (formerly PCMI) application process which includes a valid substitute permit issued by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE).

Other Substitute Position Requirements:

To be a substitute in non-certified positions, such as aides, custodial, food service, secretarial, etc., you will need a minimum of the following:

  • High school diploma or GED
  • Passing of a federal and state fingerprint background check.
  • Completion of the ESS Midwest, Inc. (formerly PCMI) application process.



  1. External LinkSign-up and apply online for ESS Midwest, Inc. [formerly PCMI Services (WillSub)]. Complete the ESS application process by submitting the required documents, appropriate forms, and reviewing the required training modules. [PDF DocumentView step-by-step instructions on completing the ESS applications process.]
  2. View the instructions for scheduling an appointment for the required fingerprinting process. All TCAPS employees and ESS employees must complete this process
  3. Pay the $45 fee for the Michigan substitute permit. A request for payment will be emailed to you after ESS has applied for your permit during the application process.
  4. For questions regarding the ESS application process, please contact ESS Midwest, Inc. at 877.855.7264 or

If you are a retired State of Michigan teacher and/or a retired TCAPS teacher and are interested in becoming a guest teacher with TCAPS, please:

  1. External LinkComplete the TCAPS online application. To apply for guest teacher job postings, click on “View Open Positions,” then click on “Apply” located on the right hand side of the job posting to complete the TCAPS application.
  2. View the instructions for scheduling an appointment for the required fingerprinting process. All TCAPS employees and PCMI employees must complete this process.
  3. Confirm that your Michigan teaching certificate is valid, renew your certificate, or request that TCAPS apply for a substitute permit on your behalf. To renew your certificate, go to External and complete the required renewal process with the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). Please note that Michigan retirees may be required to remit $45 to MDE for the substitute permit application fee.
  4. Christa Hislop, TCAPS’ guest teacher specialist, will contact you to get you set up as a guest teacher in the district. Christa can be reached at 231.933.1714 or

Getting Paid

Guest teacher pay rates are as follows:

  • ESS Substitute Teacher: Day-to-Day – $19.80 per hour.
  • State of Michigan Retired Teacher (including TCAPS' retirees): Day-to-Day –  $26.14 per hour.
  • Rates for long-term positions vary based on experience and position specifications.

NOTE: State of Michigan retired teachers who are guest teaching in the district are required to submit a timesheet for their work, which is to be signed by the building principal for the position you are assigned. Please submit your completed and signed timesheet to Christa Hislop (231.933.1714) in the TCAPS guest teacher office at the Tompkins Boardman Administration Center (412 Webster St.).

For ESS employees, time worked is verified by administrative assistants at the building assignments via External LinkWillSub.


  • PDF DocumentTCAPS Pay Schedule - Hourly TCAPS employees are paid two weeks in arrears for their hours worked. Please review the TCAPS payroll calendar for information about when you will be receiving your paychecks.
  • ESS/WillSub Pay Schedule – If you have opted for direct deposit with ESS, the deposit will be made to your account the Friday of each pay period and will be listed under a line item called “Dynamic HR”. Review the pay schedule for information about when you will be receiving your paychecks. For ESS payroll questions, please contact ESS Midwest, Inc. (formerly PCMI Services) at 877.855.7264.

All in A School Day


At elementary and secondary buildings, the price of an adult lunch is $5.15. Please visit: for school lunch menus by building. For more information about lunch meal options, please contact Food and Nutrition Services Department at 231.933.1911.


  • On inclement weather days, please note the following:
  • Listen to local tv/radio stations for information on school delays and/or cancellations.
  • TCAPS’ school closings hotline is typically updated each morning by 6:00 a.m.: 231.933.1955
  • Once school is in session, it is extremely rare that school will be closed due to inclement weather. Please plan accordingly.
  • If school is closed due to inclement, the position you are assigned to that day will be canceled, and you will be notified by WillSub (based on your contact preferences).
  • Because of the day-to-day nature of substitute assignments, should school be canceled on a day when you are scheduled to work, you will not be paid for the day.

If you are an ESS employee that is injured on-the-job in a TCAPS building, please contact ESS Midwest, Inc. directly at 877.855.7264. If you are a TCAPS employee that is injured on-the-job in a TCAPS building, please contact the main office at the building you are working in or Benefits & Compensation  at 231.933.1740.

District Policies Important to Review

Please take time to click on the links below to review TCAPS Board of Education Policies/Guidelines that are important for you to know in your role as a guest teacher.

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to procure the services of substitute support staff in order to prevent the interruption of the operation of the schools. Substitute personnel are subject to a criminal history record check. External LinkView Policy 3120.04. The names of potential substitute personnel and the positions in which they may substitute shall be maintained by the human resources office. The Board will not employ children, siblings, spouse, parents, in-laws, or bona fide dependents (IRS criteria) of a Board member.

TCAPS prohibits the use, possession, concealment, or distribution of drugs/alcohol/tobacco by employees on school grounds, in school or school-approved vehicles, or at any school-related event. The unlawful possession or use of alcohol and drugs is wrong and harmful. Employees who violate this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, in accordance with due process, up to and including termination and referral for prosecution. For more information regarding TCAPS’ drug free work place, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policies External Link3122.01 and External Link4122.01. External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here.

An effective educational program requires the services of employees with high ideals, integrity and compassion. To maintain and promote these essentials, the Board of Education expects staff members to maintain high standards in their working relationships and in the performance of their professional responsibilities. For more information regarding staff ethics, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policies External Link3210 and External Link4210External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here.

Employees shall not associate or fraternize with students at any time in a manner which may give the appearance of impropriety, including, but not limited to, the creation or participation in any situation or activity which could be considered abusive or sexually suggestive. Other examples of inappropriate behavior by staff include, but are not limited to, behavior that distracts, interferes with, or prevents normal work functions or activities. For more information regarding appropriate staff interaction with students and workplace safety, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policies External Link4213 and External Link4362.02External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here.

TCAPS complies with all federal and state laws and regulations prohibiting discrimination and harassment. No applicant or staff member shall be excluded from participating in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination in any program or activity, on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, age, sex, gender, marital status, disability, height, weight, and/or any other legally protected characteristic. Harassment includes any speech or action that creates a hostile, intimidating or offensive learning and/or working environment. Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature. Any staff member or agent of the Board who is found to have harassed or discriminated against a staff member, student or third party will be subject to discipline in accordance with the law and the terms of any applicable collective bargaining agreement. For more information regarding equal employment opportunity, discrimination, and/or harassment, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policies External Link3362 and External Link4362External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here or contact human resources at 231.933.1716.

The Board of Education believes that staff members are highly visible to students, other staff and the public. As such, the Board believes staff should at all times be well dressed and groomed. Employees are expected to be physically clean and neat. In addition, employees are expected to dress in a manner that communicates pride in personal appearance to others. For more information regarding staff dress and grooming, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policies External Link3216 and External Link4216External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here.

Parents of students, or eligible students who have attained the age of eighteen, have rights under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA). In view of this and to ensure compliance with FERPA, employees are expected to never discuss individual students with others (especially matters related to discipline, health, academic deficiencies, or other matters that would be confidential in nature) outside of their typical duties as described in their job descriptions. For more information regarding FERPA, please contact Erika Swartz, Pupil Accounting, at 231.933.1722.

The Board of Education is concerned with the physical and mental well-being of the students and will cooperate in the identification and reporting of cases of child abuse or neglect in accordance with law. Child abuse is defined as words or overt actions that cause harm, potential harm, or threat of harm to a child, which occurs through physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, or maltreatment. Child neglect is defined as harm to a child’s health or welfare by negligent treatment such as failure to provide adequate food, clothing, shelter or medical care, or placing a child at unreasonable risk to the child’s health or welfare by failure to intervene to eliminate that risk when that person is able to do so and has knowledge of the risk. For more information regarding student abuse and neglect, please review TCAPS Board of Education Policy External Link8462 at External LinkAdditional Board Policies can be found here.

New Employee Orientation

TCAPS Guest Teacher Office

Christa Hislop
Guest Teacher Specialist
Traverse City Area Public Schools
412 Webster Street
Traverse City, MI 49686