The Berks County Intermediate Unit offers a Guest Teacher Program for individuals who are interested in serving as substitute teachers. The program is designed to provide participants with limited or no teaching experience with the necessary training required to become day-to-day substitutes. Anyone possessing a bachelor’s degree in any field from an accredited college or university is eligible to apply.* Upon successfully completing the training program, new Guest Teachers receive an emergency permit through the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) which qualifies them to substitute on a day-to-day basis in both BCIU classrooms and any of the participating Berks County public school entities.

Through the Guest Teacher Program, participants learn about classroom management, lesson-planning, special education, development and behavior of age groups, and how to deal effectively with today’s students. After meeting all permit eligibility requirements, successfully completing the the two-day training, and submitting all required paperwork, the BCIU will apply for a Type 06 emergency permit on the new Guest Teacher’s behalf. Once the permit is approved, the Guest Teacher will be eligible to work as a day-to-day substitute in any subject area and at any grade level for the academic school year in the following Berks County public school entities:

Antietam – Boyertown Area – Brandywine Heights Area – Conrad Weiser Area – Daniel Boone Area – Exeter Township – Fleetwood Area – Governor Mifflin – Kutztown Area – Muhlenberg – Oley Valley – Reading – Schuylkill Valley – Tulpehocken Area – Twin Valley – Wilson – Berks Career & Technology Center – BCIU

Please note that the emergency permit sponsored by the BCIU qualifies an individual to substitute in short-term assignments only at the public school entities listed above. Program participants must be able to be present for and complete both days of training in order to secure an emergency permit.

The Guest Teacher training is offered twice a year – September and January – at the main office of the Berks County Intermediate Unit, located at 1111 Commons Boulevard, Reading, PA 19605 (directions). The fee for the program is $25.00, which includes the cost of the two-day training, lunch on the second day, and the initial emergency permit fee.


FALL 2018 – September 26 & 27, 2018

Deadline to Apply: July 6, 2018
Applicant Interviews: July 25, 2018

SPRING 2019 – January 22 & 23, 2019 (Snow Dates – January 29 & 30, 2019)

Deadline to Apply: November 9, 2018
Applicant Interviews: November 29, 2018


The following application materials must be received by the application deadlines noted above.
Late applications will not be accepted.

  • PA Standard Teaching Application, including essay portion – Click here to download
  • Two (2) personal or professional referencesClick to download
  • $25.00 money order payable to BCIU (Sorry, no personal checks or cash accepted.)

Please mail to:

Monica Willett
Attn: Guest Teacher Program

BCIU Office of Human Resources
P.O. Box 16050
Reading, PA 19612-6050

Once your application materials have been received, you will be contacted by email or phone to schedule an interview. We will notify you within one (1) week as to the outcome of your interview.
Please do not submit additional materials until you are contacted.

If you are accepted into the Guest Teacher Program, the following documentation must be submitted no later than the Monday prior to the first day of training:

  • Official sealed transcripts documenting undergraduate degree(s)
  • Click here to download a packet of all required documentation
    (INCLUDES: Background check clearances for school employment dated within one (1) year, including Child Abuse History, PA Criminal Background Check, and FBI Federal Background Check; Form PDE-6004 Arrest/Conviction Reporting; School Personnel Health Record dated within six (6) months w/ TB Test dated within three (3) months; Form PDE-338G; PSERS Information Form)
  • Certificates of Completion for Act 126 Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting & Guest Teacher District Child Abuse Policies (3 modules)
  • Certificate of Completion for Act 71 Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention (1 module)
    Please refer to the Act 126 and Act 71 Training Section for details regarding these trainings.

Guest Teacher applicants must also register on PDE’s Teacher Information Management System (TIMS) online web portal and initiate an emergency permit request. >> Click here for instructions


The Pennsylvania Public School Code requires that a teacher of a non-foreign language subject, including a Guest Teacher working under a day-to-day emergency permit, must either be a U.S. citizen or hold a lawful permanent resident visa (“green card”) which allows him or her to live and work in the U.S. If you do not hold a green card, you are ineligible for an emergency permit through the Guest Teacher Program.

In addition, any eligible foreign-educated Guest Teacher participant must have a Foreign Evaluation Report completed through a PDE-approved agency to show that his or her foreign transcript credentials are equivalent to a U.S. baccalaureate degree or higher.

All documentation must be submitted no later than the Monday prior to the first day of training.


A day-to-day emergency permit for the Guest Teacher Program is valid for one school year. All permits expire on July 31 regardless of the date of issuance. To continue serving as a substitute from year to year, you must renew your emergency permit.

To renew your permit, please submit an updated PDE 338G and $5.00 money order payable to the BCIU. >> PDE 338G is available here.

Additionally, the following conditions must be met in order to renew your permit:

  • Act 71 Youth Suicide Awareness & Prevention training must be completed every year.
  • Act 126 Child Abuse Recognition & Reporting training must be completed if you have not already completed it within the last (5) years.
    Please refer to the Act 126 and Act 71 Training section below for details on these trainings.
  • All three clearances (Child Abuse, PA Criminal History, and FBI Federal Background Check) must be dated within five (5) years of issuance. >> Click here for clearance renewal instructions.

Please submit all renewal materials by July 6, 2018 to:

Monica Willett
Attn: Guest Teacher Renewals
BCIU Office of Human Resources
P.O. Box 16050
Reading, PA 19612-6050

To ensure your emergency permit is approved by the beginning of 2018-2019 academic year, all documentation must be received no later than July 6, 2018. After this date, permit renewals will only be processed on a monthly basis.

Once your permit is approved, we will notify you via email as well as all participating school entities.


Act 126 Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting

Effective January 1, 2013, Act 126 mandates that all Pennsylvania school entities provide mandatory training on child abuse recognition and reporting to all employees who have direct contact with children. A minimum of three (3) hours of training is required every five (5) years.

If you are a new Guest Teacher Program applicant and completed this training previously, please submit any training documentation with your new applicant paperwork. If you have not completed the training previously, it is available to you at no cost through our online provider, SafeSchools. If you would like to complete this training, follow the SafeSchools Instructions below.

Act 71 Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention

Effective June 26, 2014, Act 71 mandates that all Pennsylvania school entities provide four (4) hours of age-appropriate youth suicide awareness and prevention training every five (5) years to all educators in schools serving students in grades six through twelve.

Because an emergency permit allows a Guest Teacher to substitute in grades K–12, Act 71 training must be completed annually as part of the renewal process. It is available to you at no cost through our online provider, SafeSchools. If you would like to complete this training, follow the SafeSchools Instructions below.

SafeSchools Instructions (Act 126 and Act 71 on-line training)

The Act 126 and Act 71 training modules may be accessed through the SafeSchools web site at Your log-in for SafeSchools is the email address that we currently have on file. (If you are a new Guest Teacher applicant, it would be the email you provided us during the application process.) Click “Sign in” and then “Log Me In!” Your training assignments will be listed and include:

  • Act 126: Part 1 Child Abuse Recognition and Mandatory Reporting (56 minutes)
  • Act 126: Part 2 Educator Discipline Act, Sexual Misconduct and Maintaining Professional Boundaries (125 minutes)
  • Guest Teacher Child Abuse Policies – Review the Guest Teacher Policies for the districts in which you would like to sub.
  • Act 71: Youth Suicide Awareness and Prevention (52 minutes)

Once you have completed a training module, click on the blue ribbon icon to print a completion certificate. Please include this certificate(s) with your new applicant or renewal paperwork.


>> Click here for Guest Teacher FAQs

For more information on the Guest Teacher Program, please contact Monica Willett in the BCIU Office of Human Resources at or 610-987-8433.