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Full-time substitutes positive force in classrooms

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Teaching is hard enough, but subbing is like a magic show where every day you pull a rabbit out of your hat because you don’t know where you’ll be or what you’ll teach. Wasilla High School hires full-time substitutes-James Clark, Mark Zwolinski, and Drewcilla Holifield- known as building subs to fill in for teachers whenever they need.

Mr. Clark can teach all subjects, but primarily he subs for P.E. classes and Mrs. Watchuss. Before subbing, he retired from the Anchorage School District as a teacher and a high school assistant principal. He first started subbing three years ago as a part-time substitute in all high schools and started full-time at Wasilla High School just last year. Mr. Clark is a P.E. major and his favorite class to sub for is a gym.

“The thing I like most is being with high school students and helping them move forward in life,” Mr. Clark said.

Mr. Zwolinski typically subs for Mr. Hayes and can teach both science and math. He has had 18 years of experience substituting but started substituting in Alaska around five to six years ago. The difference between part-time subbing and being a building sub is that he can get to know the students better rather than work from different schools all the time.

Another building sub is Drewcilla Holifield who has been subbing for just over a year now and started at Wasilla High School in October. Before WHS she worked around different high schools in the school district. Ms. Holifield enjoys substituting for music classes and being around the students. Being a full-time sub guarantees that she will be going to the same place every day opposed to waking up and not knowing where she’ll end up going.

“Wasilla is my favorite,” Ms. Holifield said.

Jane Wilcox is not a building substitute but is always at Wasilla High School. She involves herself a lot in WHS and just might as well be another building substitute.

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Full-time substitutes positive force in classrooms