The process of becoming a substitute teacher can be a somewhat complicated process. The fact of the matter is that the regulations, policies, and practices regarding substitute teachers vary not only from one state to another, but from one locality to another within a state. Still, there are some things that will be in common from one place to the next.
Generally speaking, to become a substitute teacher, you need to have at least some college education. In Michigan, as an example, you need to have 60 semester hours of college courses in order to qualify to be a substitute teacher. This works out to about two years of college. In other states, this requirement may be lower or higher. Still, you do not have to have a regular teaching certification to become a substitute teacher, and you do not have to have the same sort of training that a teacher needs.
To become a substitute teacher, you will need to contact the school district or districts for which you wish to substitute. In some areas, there will be one company that handles all of the substitute teachers for an area spanning several districts. In other areas, the local school districts may manage their own substitutes.
You will need to apply to become a substitute teacher much in the way that you would apply for another job. Again depending on your location, there may be a fee involved, including the costs of a background check and fingerprinting, or registration with the state. Once you have been approved to become a substitute teacher, you will very likely need to indicate to the school district or districts which schools you would like to teach at, and which grade levels you would like to teach.
Depending on the number of schools in your area, it is likely that, before too long, you may find that you are being called to substitute teach every day or nearly every day.