The Ohio House of Representatives is expected to vote on a bill that would create a license for individuals to serve as substitute pupil services personnel. HB 491 passed in the House Education and Career Readiness Committee on March 21 by a vote of 16-0. The bill enacts a new section of the Revised Code (3319.2210) that would require the state board of education to issue a substitute license to individuals who meet certain criteria and wish to serve as substitutes in the following positions:

  • ​Speech language pathologists
  • Audiologists
  • Registerd nurses
  • Physical therapists
  • Physical therapist assistants
  • Occupational therapists
  • Occupational therapist assistants
  • Social workers

The current version of HB 491 would require the superintendent to request and recommend an individual for the new license. Any candidate who wishes to obtain the license must submit both a copy of a valid occupational license as well as all materials necessary to complete a criminal background check. The license may include a term of 1–5 years as determined by the state board. The state board is prohibited from requiring any additional qualifications beyond those listed in the statute. A school district may only hire a substitute license holder in a substitute capacity.

The Ohio House will meet again during the second week in April, when it is expected to vote on this bill.