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Secondary School Educator

Responsibilities of Secondary School Teacher

As a secondary school or high school teacher, you could make a difference in a teenager's life. You could open students' eyes to a favorite discipline and help them to succeed both personally and professionally. However, being a secondary teacher requires lots of energy and brainpower, as these educators typically plan and teach multiple subjects, making sure you pique student interest by addressing the way each learns. It also demands the right temperament as you'd need to ensure the smooth development of classes through the use of psychology and discipline, as well as to successfully evaluate and communicate progress to students and parents verbally and online. As part of being a secondary teacher, you may also need to supervise lunchtime or detention, or organize school activities.

How You Could Become a Secondary School Teacher

It's important to look into statewide requirements for secondary school teaching. Most often, teachers need a bachelor's degree in the subject they intend to teach (or a related area) as well as teaching experience to work in either private or public schools. While attending school, you could major in your subject of interest, take education and psychology courses, and gain teacher instruction through a teacher preparation program. Public schools would also require a state license and in some states, a master's degree, after initially obtaining your license. You might be able to find work as a secondary teacher at a private school without the state license.

Certification varies by state but generally would require you to possess a bachelor's degree, including teacher preparation and teaching experience, and passing state certification and subject area tests. A minimum grade point average, professional development, and a background check may also be required. If you have a bachelor's degree, but lack education courses, you may be able to engage in an alternative certification program to obtain your license. You should check the requirements in the states you might want to teach in so you are not caught off-guard by a requirement you weren't aware of.

Career Earnings

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov, 2012), the median annual wage of a secondary school teacher stood at $53,230 as of May 2010. The top 10 percent earned a secondary teacher salary of more than $83,230 while the bottom 10 percent made less than $35,020. The BLS reported the highest secondary teacher salary in the state of New York where the annual mean wage of a secondary school teacher stood at $74,130 as of May 2012.

Employment of secondary school teachers is expected to grow 7 percent between 2010 and 2020, according to the BLS, due to a decline in the student-to-teacher ratios and an increase in enrollment. The BLS expects more secondary teacher job growth in the South and the West than in the Midwest and the Northeast, as well as in urban and rural school districts, rather than in suburban school districts. The retirement of a significant number of older teachers could also translate into new job openings. Secondary teacher job prospects reportedly would be better for teachers with backgrounds in areas that may be difficult to fill, including math, chemistry, physics, English as a second language, and special education. For more information on secondary education teacher programs, check out the list of schools below.

Sources:

  1. High School Teachers, Occupational Outlook Handbook (2012-2013 Edition), http://www.bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-1
  2. Secondary School Teachers, Occupational Employment and Wages (May 2012), http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes252031.htm

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B.S. in Math for Secondary Education
  • Why Earn Your Degree from GCU?
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  • Quality: Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 and is regionally accredited. Learn more today!
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Graduate Certificate in Online Teaching
  • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
  • Ranked among the Best Online MBA Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
  • Founded in 1890, it has a campus in Waterbury, CT and offers online degree program in eight-week modules, six times a year.
  • About 800 students are enrolled at the main campus, and about half of them commute.
  • Online courses make it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in as little as 18 months and a master’s degree in 14-24 months.
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MS - Personalized Learning
  • Online MEd, MS, EdD, EdS, and PhD options in K-12, higher education, and education technology.
  • Specializations in early childhood education, K-12 studies in education, educational leadership and management, curriculum and instruction, leadership in educational administration, and more.
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  • Earn credit based on learning gained from previous coursework and get your degree in less time through our Prior Learning Assessment process.
  • Capella Education Company was named one of Forbes magazine’s “100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America” for 2014 (Forbes, 2014).
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Technology Education (Master of Education) - Online
  • For the 12th consecutive year, Cal U was named one for the best schools in the Northeast by The Princeton Review 
  • Recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for: Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s 2017, Best Online Programs, Grad Education 2017 and Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s for Veterans 2017
  • Quality Online courses at Cal U have the same objectives, content and learning outcomes as campus-based programs and are taught by the same expert professors.
  • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost. Student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1
  • CAL U online programs complete an annual assessment of student learning to ensure outcomes are focused on your success in career entry, advancement or enhancement!
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MA Teaching: Middle Grades
  • Liberty University provides a worldclass education from a christ-centered worldview
  • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels
  • No standardized testing if student meets admission requirements
  • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • 95% of Liberty University students receive some form of financial aid
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  • Accredited
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