From High School To The Pros

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Your income will continue to climb as a teacher. Although being a high school teacher will not usually put you onto a financial path where you become a multimillionaire, you will earn a steady income in most school districts. When you consider the yearly increases that are available, wage hikes that come from your ongoing education, and other bonuses or incentives that may be available, you are salary will typically take an upward trajectory over time.

The benefits package that you receive is usually excellent as a high school teacher. Working as a high school teacher will give you access to a unique set of retirement benefits in the United States. You can save more of your salary into a tax-advantage plan thanks to the structure of savings that are only permitted for positions like this one. If you were to save the maximum each year, then the amount you could stash away would be double of what the average American can manage. You will also receive an extensive health care package, vacation benefits, life insurance, sick time, and other perks that are typical of the general employment experience.

You have a reasonably high level of job security in this career. Although the requirements are different in each state, you are almost guaranteed to have work available when you establish a reputation as being an excellent high school teacher.

Downsizing can happen in some communities as families move away, but that just means you can move to a different school district to start teaching again. You will face layoffs much less often when you pursue an educational career, and even if they do happen, you can always transition to a different teaching job outside of high school sometimes.

You have the opportunity to do things differently.

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Think back for a moment to the time when you were in high school. Where there some struggles in the classroom that a teacher might have been able to fix for you? You get to decide how much time you spent listening, offering second chances, and incorporating the positive changes that can make a real difference in the lives of your students. This job allows you to change the future of education. None of their efforts matter if good teachers are not in high schools helping to instruct a specific curriculum well communicating their passion for learning.

This career opportunity gives you a real chance to change the future.

You must be diligent about your financial situation as a high school teacher. Most school districts do not pay their teachers during the summer break. That means you will earn the entirety of your salary during the regular school year. Even when you take enough time to plan your savings strategy, an emergency expense could quickly wipe away what you have without another chance for a paycheck until the start of the school year.

Some school districts even reduce the amount of wages you receive during the months or pay periods where there is an extended holiday break. This disadvantage does not always apply, so you will want to check with your school district about their payment schedule to see if you can still get a check during the summer.

There are some students who you will struggle to reach. You will also find that there are some students who do not have a passion for learning, even though you are ripping your hair out trying to find a way to reach them. There are plenty of a-ha moments which are exceptionally rewarding when you work as a high school teacher, but there are also times when you will stay up late at night because you are frustrated about how one of your students chooses to perform in your classroom.

It is essential to remember that you are building a platform of learning for your students as a high school teacher. You can show these teens the way, but you cannot force them to follow the path. Your job requires a high level of commitment.

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Do you remember the feeling that you had when you were in school when you knew that the bell was about to ring? That was a signal which said you were going to get to go home and enjoy the rest of the afternoon. When you start working as a high school teacher, it is nice to have the summers off.

What many people do not realize is that your job requires you to report early to school and stay late most days. Teachers are also the most likely profession in the United States to take work home with them each night. You have lessons to plan, papers to grade, and essays to review for up to seven different classes if you work in the typical high school schedule.


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The pay scale is less than competitive in many American markets. People do not choose a career as a high school teacher because their ambition is to become wealthy. You get into this job because you want to make a positive influence in the lives of children in your community. When you compare the work that is necessary of a good teacher; however, the wages you earn are not reflective of the responsibilities you have. When you consider all of the unpaid hours you work completing mandatory tasks, the per-hour rate that you earn can be less than minimum wage.

There are even unpaid conferences and training opportunities that you must sometimes attend when you choose this career option. Your working conditions can sometimes be challenging as a high school teacher.


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  • High school teachers are sometimes required to take disciplinary actions towards the teens who are disruptive in the classroom. Many people who choose this career option also feel like it is their responsibility to take action if they believe that a child is in trouble in their home. There are a surprisingly significant number of families in each community who are facing severe problems every day. You are going to encounter issues of poverty, hunger, and abuse with your role as a high school teacher.

    When you are dealing with a large class size, up to seven periods per day, and a shifting calendar, it can be challenging to stay in control of each student relationship. So as an exchange student, you will most likely get to know loads of other exchange students and you will become instant friends. That is just what happens. And it is amazing. Not only do you then have people you can visit all over the world, but you also learn so much more about other cultures and become open-minded in a way you cannot become without these kinds of experiences.

    It is honestly just absolutely amazing. Con: It might be harder for you to leave your family and friends. Yes, it is always going to be hard to leave your family and friends, but I feel like it is a bit harder when you are younger. This is especially the case because, for most people, it is the first time they are leaving their home and for the first time to be for such a long time and to be so far away from the get go can be quite challenging.

    If you went on a year abroad from uni on the other hand, it might not be as hardbecause you might already be used to being away from your family. Nonetheless, saying good-bye to people is always really hard and on an exchange year, you will have to do it twice: once when you leave home and once when you go back. Additionally: Things like FaceTime and Skype are great. They actually make you feel like the person you are talking to is there with you and can really help with homesickness.

    Pro: You will be ahead of your peers: No matter where you go, how long you stay and how you spend your time there, when you come back from a year abroad, you will be ahead of your peers. You will be more independent, more confident, more open-minded, more organised and so many other things. Yes, spending a year abroad can and will be challenging at times, but making it through all that by yourself at such a young age teaches you lessons that none of your peers will learn until much later and some might not even learn these lessons at all.

    Con: Coming back might be hard. This, I think, kind of stems from the previous fact about being ahead of your peers. Now, some people are absolutely fine when they come back, they just carry on as before and there are no problems whatsoever. But I and a few other people I know did have problems fitting in when we came back home after our year abroad. In a way, this is just because you will have evolved so much in that one year, while everyone back home probably hasn't changed a lot in comparison, so you might not feel comfortable with the same people.

    Coming back in general is something most people don't really consider when deciding to go on a year abroad I know I definitely didn't and I just wanted to make you aware that for some people, that's the hardest part of their year. Reverse culture shock is a real thing. I think this one is kind of obvious, but yes, most universities will know about all those qualities and skills you acquire on a year abroad and they do recognise and value that. And if they don't, market yourself.

    Make them aware. A year abroad shows you are independent, flexible, you can adapt to new situations, you are organised, communicative don't worry if you have trouble with any of that now, you'll develop all those kinds of skills once you are actually on your way , etc. Con: The curriculum in your host country might be very different from that in your home country. So, shocker, school systems aren't the same everywhere The only reason I put this in here is that school curricula can often vary a lot more than those of universities.

    How much they differ obviously depends on where you are from and where you are going.

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    I personally wouldn't worry too much about that though since most people are fine grades-wise when abroad as well as once they come back and reintegrate into their school. Just make sure you know if there are any subjects your home school requires you to take while abroad and whether you need to get any specific grades. I know the Canadian girl who stayed with my family in Austria for a year also took some classes online while she was with us, so you might want to look into that.