skip to main content
two young people sitting in a classroom on their phones

Everything you need to know about Gen Z substitute teachers

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

Get ready because a new generation of workers is hitting the classrooms! Generation Z (Gen Z) will soon make up 27 percent of the workplace, and are revolutionizing the workforce. With their fresh perspectives, tech-savviness, and modern values, it’s in everyone’s best interest to understand how to attract and retain this new generation of talent.

Gen Z is looking for:


Although Gen Z grew up with the ability to connect digitally 24/7, they possess a natural inclination toward building meaningful connections. In addition to wanting a sense of belonging and collaboration, they prioritize open communication and embrace technology to foster connections both inside and outside the classroom. 

Gen Z understands the significance of establishing personal relationships in creating a positive and engaging learning environment. Recent research shows that when it comes to interacting with coworkers, Gen Z actually prefers face-to-face communication and in-person collaboration, making them ideal candidates for teaching. With their technological savvy and desire for relationship building, Gen Z substitutes can leverage these traits  to foster strong relationships with students, while better understanding their needs, inspire them, and foster a conducive learning environment.

Pay transparency:

While salary has consistently been the most important factor in deciding on a job, Gen Z is less motivated by a paycheck and more interested in transparency and a dedication to societal change. When it came to deciding between a lower-paying, interesting job over a higher-paying, dull job, they were split almost evenly over the choice. 

That being said, 85% of respondents in a survey of recent graduates said they were “less likely to apply for a job if the company does not disclose the salary range in the job posting.” In addition to simplifying the negotiation process, salary transparency helps employers close wage gaps across gender, race, and background, while also creating an environment of trust and openness.


Diversity — race, gender, identity, orientation, etc — matters everywhere, but especially to Gen Z. Organizations that can better represent a diverse spectrum, are more likely to attract this new sub pool. 

Gen Z individuals seek workplaces that prioritize diversity and inclusion. They believe in equal opportunities for all and value multiculturalism. As substitute teachers, Gen Z brings this perspective into the classroom, promoting empathy, understanding, and inclusivity among students.


Gen Z has grown up in a fast-paced, ever-changing world — flexibility is a defining characteristic for this bunch. Comfortable with ambiguity, Gen Z are quick to embrace new teaching methodologies and technologies.

It is important to note that work-life balance and flexibility are important factors in a career for Gen Z. This translates into their approach as substitute teachers, where they are willing to adapt to various teaching styles, curricula, and classroom dynamics. They can seamlessly integrate into different educational settings, ensuring continuity in the absence of the regular teacher.

Growth and learning opportunities:

Gen Z aren’t just looking for a paycheck, they are looking for a career path, somewhere they can grow personally and professionally. They are highly motivated to continuously learn and develop their skills. This generation values opportunities that enhance their abilities and broaden their perspectives.

In the workforce, Gen Z seeks employers who invest in their development and provide clear paths for advancement. From a young age, the value of life-long learning was ingrained in this generation, and this desire for growth and learning carries over to their role as substitute teachers. They actively seek professional development opportunities, attend workshops and conferences, and engage in networking to broaden their knowledge and improve their teaching skills.

If you’re looking to recruit and retain the budding Gen Z workforce, partnering with a substitute teaching marketplace like Swing is a great place to start. With flexibility, diversity, pay transparency, long-term subbing opportunities, Swing is a great place for a budding teacher to get their start.

New call-to-action