Job Prospects Looking Bleak for Educators

When we hear news about the economic crisis and jobs being cut, we usually think of burly manufacturing men standing in the unemployment lines. Most don’t think of skilled professionals having too hard of a time getting back on their feet during times of economic duress. Surprisingly, one of the industries losing jobs at an astonishing rate is the public school system. With all of the talk of needing more educated students, taxpayers aren’t willing to shill out the extra cash for teachers to keep their jobs. Here are some reasons why investing in a teaching degree may be a bad idea:

Government Spending Cuts

Local governments are slashing jobs all over the public sector in a desperate measure to decrease spending and appease tax payers. According to a report on CNN, the private sector added over 100,000 jobs last year, but the public sector cut 35,00 which included 24,400 teaching jobs.

While local and state governments are cutting these positions due to re-election threats from groups like the Tea Party, the federal government is being forced to pump more money into school systems. President Obama has already sent $30 million to the states in order to lessen the impact from these layoffs.

Technological Advances

Another reason for the lack of teaching positions is the increased use of technology at home and in the classroom. Just like self-checkout lanes have replaced cashiers at grocery stores, teachers are being replaced by laptops, tablets, and the new HTC Android phone. Online learning has made it possible for students to avoid the classroom all together and receive their education from home.

Teachers may be intimidated by new technology when they should be embracing it as a clever way to make learning fun for students. Unfortunately, this will also mean less reliance on teachers to control classrooms and set order in student’s lives.

Tenure

The public school system, and academia in general, has always been plagued by tenured teachers who are out of touch with the reality students face when they leave school. These tenured positions are an archaic boundary that most teachers fresh out of college have no control over. These positions are bad for students because they are learning from teachers who stopped evolving their lesson plans long ago.

I remember being in high school Spanish class and learning how they speak in Spain instead of Mexicans and immigrants from the Southwestern U.S. Tenured positions favor tradition instead of real world application.

Teaching is a noble profession. If your heart is set on educating the youth of our country, you should by all means try to procure a BS degree in education. If you would still like to help people, but are afraid of the job prospects, try pursuing a position in the health care industry or tech world in order to make the big bucks.

2 Responses to “Job Prospects Looking Bleak for Educators”

  1. krantcents October 12, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

    I have been teaching for the last 10 years and last Spring, I went through a RIF, rescinded, displaced and a new assignment. I have tenure and still lost my position. This is the state of education. Lack of funds has affected all government jobs. The real problem is there are a lot of teachers who are close to retirement age and yet school districts across the country have not hired young teachers to replace them in the next few years. A new teacher does not become competent until they have a few years experience. The real education crisis is coming!

    • Tony Chou October 13, 2011 at 7:03 am #

      I’ve seen the trend where a lot of young people fresh out of school want to become teachers because it’s relatively stable. But those who are close to retirement just won’t retire. It’s a tough industry right now.