From classroom to principal's office
Many teachers do not intend to move into administration during their careers. Some would prefer a role that allows them to spread their influence but also keeps them working directly with students in the classroom. For others, it may be their goal from the beginning. If you have ever considered making the change from classroom teacher to a part of school administration, a master's degree in educational leadership may be a logical first step.
Job outlook for administrators
While the job growth outlook is slower than average when compared to the national employment numbers, the number is still growing. Additionally, the median salary for an administrator is over $89,000 per year, but the median teacher's salary is closer to $55,000 per year. This is a major adjustment in salary level, and if you are already in a district as a teacher you may be a step ahead on the job search side of things. Many districts search internally first, and if a teacher is already working toward a higher level qualification, such as a master's degree in educational leadership, the administration will likely already be aware that they may have a future leader on hand.
Steps to make the transition
One of the most important things that a school administrator can do is to already be an established and successful teacher. Without that experience, the ability of any member of school administration to motivate and inspire their staff is going to be questioned. Many teachers feel that if their administration does not have classroom experience, they really do not know what teaching is like. Assuming you are already working hard in the classroom and making a difference for students, a master's degree in educational leadership is a great way to start making progress toward your new career path.
Nearly everyone that is working in the education field has chosen it because they want to make a difference in the lives of their students. Becoming a part of the educational system is a dream for many. If you wake up every morning and walk into your classroom, teach your heart out, and could not imagine it any other way, the classroom might be the place for you. If you do exactly that but have a strong desire to be less directly involved and more of a big picture situation, a shift from classroom to school administration may be in order. It may allow you to move your career forward and reach out to a bigger population of students.
Learn about the UT Arlington online M.Ed. in Educational Leadership program.
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