Education is one of the cornerstones of our society. As the Baby Boomer Generation of teachers retires, a hole is forming in the education sector that needs to be filled. This is good news for aspiring teachers who want to move up in their position, but competition is rising among teachers for coveted positions. Despite this gap, teachers are still making low wages that make it difficult for teachers to retain their jobs. The best hope for a teacher to make a higher wage is to gain new responsibilities and leadership in their field. Below are just some of the ways you can prove yourself worthy of success in the field of education.
Further Your Education
In order to advance and get noticed, you should never get rusty with old teaching techniques. Express interest to your colleagues and research educational programs that allow you to expand your skill set. There are dozens of programs to suit your specific needs. Getting a specific master’s or doctoral degree will make you invaluable to your school as long as it correlates to your goals. You can pursue education programs in technology, multiple subject teaching, clinical counseling, disabilities, ESL and much more. If you want to move up in your position, give yourself an advantage with a doctorate in educational leadership at Gwynedd Mercy for a chance to gain more authority and earn a larger paycheck.
Try to attend as many conferences as you can. If the opportunity arises, suggest conferences to your department administrator to show initiative. Attending conferences not only shows your dedication but they also provide valuable information that can improve your career. Conferences help you learn new teaching methods and ideas, while also providing networking opportunities with others in your field.
Take an Extended Role
Exceptional teachers will usually be presented with the opportunity to extend their role to other positions. If you show special skills in a particular area, a school district or school may pay you more to further develop curriculums and become a role model to other teachers. Teachers with an extended role often find themselves teaching other teachers how to create better lesson plans and incorporate better teaching techniques to other and less experienced teachers. Depending on the state and program, you can receive grants, annual stipends or even a raise.
Maintain Your Professional Relationships
In order to advance in your field, it’s critical that you maintain positive professional relationships with your colleagues. No matter which work environment you teach in, you will have to communicate and collaborate with others as a team. Make yourself known by being friendly and professional with principals, department administrators and other teachers alike. At times, you’ll need to lean on other teachers for support and you can learn a lot from your colleagues. Collaborate with other members of your department to find better ideas and create a better department as a whole.
Become a Department Head
If you want a bigger boost in pay, you should consider becoming a department head. This doesn’t happen overnight—experience, age, nepotism, and more all play a role in becoming a department head. Be sure to express your interest early and lay down the groundwork to show your worthiness of becoming a department head.
Consider an Administrative Position
The most lucrative position you are likely to attain in education is that of an administrator. The finest example of this is the role of a principal. Administrators take on the task of exerting their authority to maintain and grow the school. You may pursue a position as a principal, vice principal, athletic director or guidance counselor. In order to gain these positions, you must first do your time in the classroom and rise through the ranks of all of these steps. To stay competitive, you should consider getting a doctorate in educational leadership to learn the essentials of what it takes to be a successful principal.
The teaching field is riddled with opportunities for advancement. Consider these examples to optimize your expertise as a teacher and gain more opportunities in the future.