8 Reasons to become a teacher
1 – You will find a job
Teachers are in demand. According to Forbes around “100,000 new teachers are hired in this country annually, and the number of school-age children is projected to rise.”
There are teacher shortages all over this country. It does not matter where you live, finding a job as an educator should not be too difficult.
2- If you work hard, you will see results
Is teaching incredibly difficult? Yes! Does it follow you home and challenge you physically, emotionally, and intellectually? Yes! But for many of us, that challenge is part of what drives us to teach and to teach better. Teaching is not for the faint at heart. The profession desperately needs young people who are empathetic, but strong; intelligent, but able to break complex ideas into small pieces; kind, but firm; and committed, but not to the detriment of their own self-care.
That’s a big ask, but I know a lot of young people who are eager for a challenge and ready to make a positive difference in the world.
When you work hard to help a student intellectually, socially, or emotionally, that child’s future is forever changed. That difference that you make in their life ripples into their future no matter how big or small.
3 – There are very few careers in which you can create more positive change than education
4 – Moving? No problem
For the most part, once you are certified to teach in one state, you should have very little problem becoming certified in another. This makes teaching a great career for individuals with spouses whose careers require moving around, particularly the military.
The National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) Interstate Agreement exists to ease the transition from teaching in one state to another. State participating in this agreement have guidelines for reciprocity in licensure.
For example, I moved from Virginia to Maryland in 2012. Maryland accepted my Virginia license and I did not have to take any additional coursework or do any new credentialing. I only spent one year in Maryland before moving back to Virginia and again there was no additional work to switch states and continue teaching.
For specific information for each state check out this website.
5 – Family friendly schedule
Except in unusual circumstances (for example a theater teacher with a weekend show) you will never have to work (in your building) on the weekend. Any work you do choose to do on the weekend, such as planning or grading, can be done from home and it is a matter of your own work ethic and time management how much work needs to be done at home.
When I first started teaching I spent many hours grading and planning at home. After 14 years I have that down to next to nothing because I have perfected my workflow.
Not only will your weekends be free but so will your evenings. Teachers never have to work an overnight shift and they rarely have to be at school in the evening. The only exception being something like an open house night.
6 – Summer
Having the summer off is a huge benefit of teaching. It gives teachers time to do things to enhance their own well being like: spending time with family, traveling, taking a continuing education course, pursing hobbies, etc.
I love having the summer off! I focus on spending quality time with my children.
7 – Retirement
Teaching is one of very few careers that offers a full retirement package these days. Almost all school systems offer retirement benefits after teachers are “vested.” Being vested means that you’ve put in a minimum required years of service. Usually 5-10 years.
The amount of pension pay you receive after retirement varies depending on years of service and the state you worked in, but continuing to get paid anything after retirement is a huge benefit over many jobs that offer no retirement compensation at all.
8 – Health Insurance
Yes, health insurance premiums are rising, but having an employer contribution to your health care is amazing! Not to mention most school systems offer dental and vision plans as well.
Some school systems also provide fitness incentive programs that teachers can use to earn cash or gift cards.
There are more
I didn’t even mention the travel opportunities for teachers or the discounts at all kinds of stores both brick and mortar and online. Not to mention discounts on everything from your cell phone bill to your house down payment. Check out this post for some of the more unexpected perks of teaching.