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What Advancement Opportunities Are Available for Those With a Teaching Degree?

What Advancement Opportunities Are Available for Those With a Teaching Degree?

IMAGE SOURCE: jeshua.nace, Flickr, Creative Commons license

The most obvious career path open to graduates of a college degree program in education or teacher preparation is teaching. However, having a teaching degree can also prepare you to advance into positions like school librarian, school counselor, instructional coordinator and principal, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported.

School Librarian

Learning how to research, find and use information is an essential skill for students. A school librarian works directly with students, teaching them to locate and access library resources like books and multimedia materials. Librarians in elementary and secondary schools earn a median wage of $58,480 per year, according to the BLS.

Candidates often need to earn a teacher’s certification in order to attain school librarian positions, the BLS reported. They also need a master’s degree in library science or a related subject. Certain states mandate that aspiring school librarians take the PRAXIS II Library Media Specialist standardized test, according to the BLS.

School Counselor

Some students need a little extra help to succeed in their education. A school counselor is a community and social service professional who works in an educational setting to help students cultivate important academic and social skills so that they can thrive in school. School counselors at elementary and secondary schools earn a median salary of $61,260 per year, the BLS reported.

Transitioning into a school counselor position is common among teachers who want to make a difference outside the classroom. In fact, a number of states now require applicants for school counselor roles to have a minimum of one to two years of classroom experience, according to the BLS. If you want to make this transition, be prepared to go back to school yourself. Typically, school counselors need a master’s degree in school counseling or a similar subject.

Instructional Coordinator

Teachers develop lesson plans to match a curriculum and educate students in the classroom, but determining what subject matter an educator should cover begins with an instructional coordinator. These education professionals decide on the curriculum for a class and create or find the educational materials necessary to teach that subject matter. At the elementary and secondary school levels, instructional coordinators earn a median annual salary of $67,700, the BLS reported.

Since the role of an instructional coordinator falls somewhere in between a teacher and an administrator, different states classify the position differently. In some states, you need a teaching certification to move into an instructional coordinator role, while other states require an education administrator license, according to the BLS. Regardless, instructional coordinators must have several years of related work experience as a teacher, principal or both. It’s also essential to attain a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction, education or a related subject.

Principal or Assistant Principal

Principals and assistant principals use the leadership abilities necessary to manage a classroom to instead oversee an entire school. They handle the day-to-day operations, supervise staff and manage everything from school security to cafeteria services, the BLS reported. School principals earn a median salary of $90,410 per year, according to the BLS.

School principals almost always start their careers in education as teachers. Only after they have several years of experience teaching and a master’s degree in teaching, education administration, education leadership or a related subject can candidates attain an education administrator license and move up into the role of school principal.

Not every teacher chooses to remain in the classroom for his or her entire career in education. Advancing into one of these roles allows educators to put their teaching skills to work outside the classroom.

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