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Phila. School District Superintendent Says NJ Firm Falls Short In Providing Substitute Teachers

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) --  Superintendent William Hite says he'll ask the School Reform Commission to modify its contract with a company that has fallen short in its promise to provide substitute teachers.

The company, called Source4Teachers of Cherry Hill, promised to fill 90% of the Philadelphia School District's substitute teaching jobs. But the firm hasn't come close. A district spokesman says Monday's "fill rate" was 27%.

Now, Hite says he'll ask the School Reform Commission to modify its two-year, $34 million contract with the firm.

"If we make a decision now to end our contract with Source4Teachers, it could impact next week the number of subs that we also have available in classrooms. So we have to consider all of the implications," Hite said.

The company three weeks ago agreed to pay teachers more, and principal Colleen Bowen of Clara Barton Elementary in Feltonville says Source4Teachers has performed better lately.


"We had absences this week that were all covered. So that shows that we're moving in a better direction that is improving. However it has been more of a struggle this year than it has in the past," Bowen said.

The district managed its subs last year, filling about 60% of the vacancies.

Owen Murphy, a spokesman for Source4Teachers, said in a statement, "Source4Teachers is working closely with the district to refocus its efforts with a particular emphasis on the filling of teaching vacancies above all non-classroom positions."

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