Many educators have left their jobs in either private schools or public schools in school districts near their homes because they were under pressure to teach a new curriculum (or in some cases a different grade level), found themselves teaching in larger classes, and had so many other things going on at once that they simply could not focus on one thing.
Some have had decades of teaching, others perhaps just a few years, and/or just want to leave it all behind for a new career path, but need to pay bills, mortgages, and everyday essentials.
The good news is that there are some great career options and career choices for former teachers who need a change from their current careers but aren’t sure where else to turn.
What are some of those job opportunities for teachers who’ve been laid off or want to leave the field? There’s a wide range for those who have excellent teaching skills, organizational skills, and strong interpersonal skills.
Alternative careers for those in the education field range from corporate trainers being employed at a government agency to working at non-profit organizations where they can use their teaching experience in a new way.
Of course, career opportunities in the field of education often require a qualification such as a degree or a diploma. A teacher typically refers to an educational professional who teaches children in school age groups and also a qualified individual who works in adult education settings. In addition to teaching roles, most positions in education carry responsibilities that entail advising pupils about their personal development and helping them achieve academic success.
Qualifications vary according to the position being filled, however, common qualifications include those obtained through formal study or work experience. Salaries also range depending on what you choose, the position and your experience, all according to muse.com.
What a teacher Does
Teachers who have had teaching jobs are often called on to lead, manage, teach, train, supervise, counsel, career coach, mentor, and encourage others to help students achieve goals and reach higher levels of academic success.
Teachers must also be able to communicate well with individuals from diverse backgrounds, cultures, ages, genders, and abilities. They should be proficient in developing curricula, coordinating instruction, and establishing standards for learning. In addition, they should be adept at managing classroom dynamics, managing behavioral issues, maintaining instructional consistency across grade levels, evaluating student progress, guiding remedial efforts, and working effectively with parents.
Furthermore, teachers must demonstrate proficiency in using various electronic resources, including school computers, mobile devices, eBooks, software applications, online databases, and virtual classrooms.
Finally, teachers must be skilled communicators who can motivate, inspire, and engage learners of all ages when pursuing their career goals or a different career journey.
Jobs Fit for Teachers
Those who enjoy the idea of becoming teachers may wish to consider careers outside the classroom. Several interesting positions exist for experienced teachers or individuals who have made a career out of being educators.
Here is a short overview of some of the most popular options available to former teachers and/or retirees. These include administrative roles, such as school counselor or guidance counselor; educational research and development, such as project manager or program coordinator; and consulting services, such as curriculum consultant or testing specialist.
Educational Sales Representative
$55,000 Average salary:
A sales career is not as different from teaching as people think. You’re going to have to learn how to transfer your professional skillset into selling to schools, but once you’ve done that, you’ll be able to put that skill set to use at any place you want.
Average salary: Pay range: $25,000–$182,000
A good teacher knows how to market themselves – not only does everyone know the value they bring to the table, but we also feel like they care about us and our success. If you’re interested in helping others find homes, then becoming a real estate agent may be just what you’re looking for. You’ll spend much of your day helping people find their dream homes, so being able to build rapport quickly and effectively is vital. Real estate agents must pass licensing exams before being allowed to work independently; however, most big cities offer training programs for aspiring agents to prepare them for these tests.
$67,288 Average salary:
While the exact type of work varies from client to client, it’s a great position for people who have an understanding of educational policy and practice, as they help schools develop strategic programs and implement them effectively. A teacher could potentially oversee the development of curricula, classroom management protocols, and program evaluation and assessment. They would probably earn the most cash by assisting schools to prepare their athletes for college admissions interviews, which often involves developing effective study and test-taking skills.
Average salary: Pay range: $36,000–$84,000
In this role, You might be asked to research, write, submit and monitor proposals to get grants to pay for your organization’s programs, services, or events; or you may be asked to track classroom expenses, employ persuasive tactics, and use effective research skills when requesting school supplies, books, computers, etc.
Usually, people in this position have several main responsibilities including researching, reviewing, and preparing grants to assist with securing funding for programs and services. If the proposal is approved, these individuals might be responsible for monitoring, reporting, and ensuring that funds are well spent. Teachers are often accustomed to approaching administrators for financial support, so granting may be easy for them.
Standardized Test Developer
Average salary: Pay range: $40,000–$85,000
It may be difficult at first to imagine working for something that drives you and your students up the wall, but change can happen from within. In this role, you might be able to help improve standardized exams to make them better.
Average salary: Pay range: $46,000–$99,000
Human Resources jobs can be found at any type of organization, ranging from small start-up companies to large multinationals. They include positions where you help manage employee benefits, negotiate salaries, screen candidates for employment, conduct interviews, onboard new hires, train staff members, implement company policies, and more. HR includes a wide range of skills, such as teaching, communication, leadership, decision-making, problem-solving, and conflict resolution.
Average salary: Pay range: $39,000–$92,000
A good way to describe what you do as a teacher would be “teaching others.” You may teach people at an educational institution (such as a university), but you might also teach people outside of school (for example, if you’re a tutor).
$68,045 Average salary:
Have you ever wondered how much of what you read in textbooks are used in classrooms? How about how much of what you see on TV is used in schools? Well, if you answered yes to either question, then you should consider becoming a teacher! Teaching is one of the best jobs out there because not only does it allow you to help others learn, but it allows you to make money doing something you love. In addition to teaching, you could also write curriculum, design lessons, plan events, and so much more.
Average salary: Pay range: $33,000–$60,000
A marketer can be creative, diligent, communicative, and able to handle complex tasks with multiple stakeholders. They must also be skilled in various forms of online advertising, such as SEO, SEM, email, and so forth. Marketers who specialize in one area often find themselves working across a wide range of disciplines. Some marketers work exclusively in one area, whereas others support a broad spectrum of activities. Regardless of your role, you should expect to develop new skills and learn about new technologies.
After-school Program Director
Average salary: Pay range: $34,000–$78,000
Children have lots of fun outside of class and in this role, you can help them get some of that fun by offering activities for them to enjoy during after-hours. Activities might be art projects, sports, clubs, or volunteering at a local charity. You could also reach out to the nearby public and private elementary and middle-grade classrooms to see if there are any classes or programs that would interest your students. And don’t forget to solicit donations from local business owners.
Average salary: Pay range: $34,000–$92,000
Whether you’re representing a business or an author, it’s your job as a publicist to make sure that your client comes across as positive and trustworthy. Publicists work with companies, organizations, governments, authors, musicians, and just about any other type of entity imaginable. They may help manage your clients’ social networking accounts, write press releases, organize events, and arrange speaking engagements. Teachers who are good organizers, excellent communicators, and comfortable working under pressure should consider becoming publicists after leaving the classrooms.
Academic Advisor (community college/university)
Average salary: Pay range: $34,000–$58,000
A good advisor can help prepare you for your future career. You’ll get paid to answer student queries about careers, colleges, interning, and more. Your job duties will include helping them decide what major they should pursue, how much debt they should take on, whether they should apply for scholarships, and so forth.
Average salary: Pay range: $25,000–$78,000
Did you teach a foreign or second-tier university course in your field of expertise? Then you might find yourself in demand as a translation tutor. You translate documents from one human tongue into another. You may also provide explanations and cultural insights along with the translations. Translation tutors typically earn between $10 to $20 per hour.
Adult Education Teacher
Average salary: Pay range: $35,000–$78,000
Want to teach, but want out of K-12 classrooms? As an educator, you’ll teach mostly students aged 18-60+, ranging in age from high-skills learners to those who haven’t yet mastered basic literacy skills in this role. Some will be studying for their GEDs; others, if they’ve just arrived in the United States, maybe learning English as a second language. You’ll be in control of class planning, curriculum development, assessment, grading, and student discipline, minus the constraints of a traditional classroom setting.
Tips for Transitioning
Teachers: use these ideas to help you transition into other careers and advice for helping you in your career pivots and job searches:
Determine what you love most about teaching. You may not realize how much you enjoy certain aspects of the profession until you leave. For example, if you love interacting with students, then perhaps you could consider becoming an admissions counselor. On the flip side, if you didn’t enjoy working with kids, maybe you should try something else. Whatever your passions are, make sure you know them before you begin searching for a new position.
When stepping away from the classroom, consider your preferences and priorities. Beyond what you’ll be getting done, consider who you’d like to work with, and where and when. Do you wish to continue working with children? At what ages? Or do you desire to work with adults? Are you interested in a traditional corporate atmosphere or a start-up? Is remote work preferable to an office setting?
Reach out to friends and colleagues who work in fields or organizations that interest you. Ask them for recommendations; check out their social media feeds and profiles. Invite them to lunch or coffee to talk about your goals and concerns. You may find someone who knows someone else who would be willing to connect you with someone who could give you great feedback on a career move. You’ll also build relationships with strong friendships while working toward your goal.
You might want to figure out what you are best at before applying for jobs. If you look back on previous experiences where you were recognized by others and given praise, then you might think about what you could offer someone else.
When looking for new jobs, highlight your transferable skills: For example, teachers, educators, and professors are typically good at synthesizing large amounts of information and making it clear, which makes it easier for readers to understand. They may also know how best to communicate complex ideas through stories. So if you think these are useful skills, then focus on highlighting how they could help you succeed in your next job hunt.
You should tailor your resume and cover letter to the job description, but no one else has to put together the dots for you!
It’s okay to ask for help, you don’t need to do everything yourself. Reach out and see if someone else can provide guidance. It might even turn out to be an inspiring story about someone who got off track but found their way back.
Just think, maybe this is the start of a new journey, away from school, and perhaps the beginning of a different — and hopefully better — journey where you can excel.