A reader writes, "I am interested in transitioning careers. I spent many years in the IT field, followed by several years at home with my children while doing some administrative work for a home business. I now want to pursue a career in teaching. I have a non-education BS degree and am taking Masters courses in education. However, I have not selected a specific major yet (still have a little time to do that). Can you offer me information regarding those areas that offer the best job prospects?"
My response: The answer to which type of teaching specialty should you decide to focus on requires you to thoughtfully consider both of these questions:
- What teaching roles are currently in high demand?
- What you would enjoy teaching?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that between 2008 and 2018 the nation will need to hire nearly half of a million additional teachers in the U.S. elementary and secondary schools.
The nationwide specialties that are in most demand include:
- Special Education
- Foreign Language
- (teaching in) Urban and Rural locations
On a more local level, demand varies by state and communities, so checking local state teaching openings periodically is a great way to keep informed.
Besides the Education Jobs category page on JobsInTheUS.com, there are teaching-specific websites that are also free and easy to use, such as:
If you're wondering where to start, these sites can let you know what openings are available locally. Currently, I'm finding that special education teachers, ed techs, behavioral teachers, math, science and foreign language positions top the list.
In a recent JobsInTheUS.com poll, English/Language Arts and Social Studies earned a combined 48 percent of the votes as the most popular subjects that people would like to teach.
Your next step: pinpointing what subject(s) you would enjoy teaching.
Good luck with your transition!
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