Substitute teachers are in such short supply on Martha’s Vineyard that Vineyard schools superintendent Matthew D’Andrea is recommending a one-third pay increase, effective immediately.

The up-Island regional school district committee on Monday became the first to approve Mr. D’Andrea’s proposal to raise the substitute rate from $90 to $120 a day, contingent on the other Island districts' agreement to do the same.

“I’m hesitant to use the word emergency, but it’s definitely an urgent need,” he told the committee at its regular meeting online.

“We have found it very challenging here to find substitute teachers, and because we’re having to solve our substitute issues in house, it is placing an added pressure on staff.”

West Tisbury and Chilmark are experiencing the shortage first-hand, West Tisbury School principal Donna Lowell-Bettencourt told the committee

“In August, our sub list listed one person,” Ms. Lowell-Bettencourt said. “We’ve been working on this. We’ve been putting the word out. But [at] less than a hundred bucks, people don’t want to do it for that.”

The $90 payment dates back well into the previous decade, Mr. D’Andrea said.

“That number . . . was probably established eight or nine years ago,” he said.

Other school systems in the region that are paying above $100 a day to substitute teachers include Falmouth ($130), Nantucket ($150), Bourne ($120), Monomoy ($112) and Barnstable ($110), Mr. D’Andrea said.

Ms. Lowell-Bettencourt said the $120 rate would compensate substitutes fairly without bringing them too close in pay to teaching assistants, known as ESPs. “It’s a great increase, it really is and I think it would be effective,” she said.

“We do not want subs to be making more than ESPs, who are coming to work every day,” school committee member Kate DeVane added.

The question of raising substitute rates was originally on last week’s agenda for the all-Island school committee meeting, which ran out of time before it could be considered, assistant schools superintendent Richie Smith said.

But the matter is so pressing that the superintendents are approaching individual school committees for their approval, rather than waiting for the next all-Island meeting.

“Not having substitutes is frankly a new trend . . . like the lack of bus drivers and such,” Mr. Smith said.

The increased rate will help school system officials in their effort to recruit more substitutes from among the Island’s retired school teachers, Mr. Smith said.

But formal teaching experience is not a prerequisite. Substitute teachers must be high school graduates who can pass the Massachusetts Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) check and who work well with children, Mr. D’Andrea said.

The committee voted 4-1, with Skipper Manter dissenting, in favor of increasing substitute teacher pay to $120 a day.

Also Monday, the committee began its review of the draft budget for the next fiscal year. Their budget review continues Nov. 2 at 8 a.m. online.