Education and Teaching Careers in Florida
While the education and teaching sector has been in decline over the past few years nationwide, Florida is anticipating growth in this sector, and The Department of Education is actively encouraging teachers from across the nation to apply for positions. With a renewed focus on meeting educational standards, the state is going so far as to implement a number of programs to encourage potential teachers to continue their education and expand their areas of specialization. In Florida, the field of education and teaching is more dynamic than ever before, and teachers who have been in the industry long-term are finding ways to participate in programs that renew their enthusiasm for growing school districts and increasing the importance of statewide education.
Careers for Graduates of Online Colleges in Florida
Careers in education are generally thought of as being exclusive to schools, but teachers and educators with a diploma from a Florida online school can find a unique career niche in many areas of interest. Education and teaching professions include: teachers, principals, school administrators, guidance counselors, special education instructors, pre-school lead teachers and teaching assistants, daycare specialists, early childhood development professionals, vocal and instrumental instructors that work within school systems, health instructors, and physical education directors.
These areas of expertise are in great demand in the Sunshine State and call upon job seekers with specialized skill sets in order to provide students across the state with superior guidance and direction. This is why it is advisable for current teachers to consider going back to school to become more specialized and more valuable in a demanding and competitive job market.
Building an Education and Teaching Career in Florida
According to the Florida Department of Education, Florida has a total of 4,125 schools that include elementary, middle, high, combination and adult education facilities across the state. As of 2010, Florida school districts reported a total of nearly 325,000 full-time employees with instructional staff accounting for almost 60% of the total.
For teachers looking for job posts, Florida offers a bright future in the realm of charter schools. From 2010-2011, Florida ranked third in national charter school enrollment and state government anticipates these numbers will continue to rise. This means that teachers looking for alternative and innovative career routes may be well-suited to new opportunities that Florida currently provides students and staff.
For those job seekers that currently hold teaching certificates in other states but cannot find jobs, Florida offers multiple routes to transferring certification in the event of a job offer. In many cases, Florida will recognize the exterior certificate, or will require a certificate issued by The National Board for Teaching Standards. If further licensing is required, the state will help guide those individuals in the right direction.
According to the Education Information and Accountability Services Data Report, the average salary paid to a Florida public school teacher during the 2010-2011 school year was $45, 723. This is a 0.94% increase from 2006-2007 school year. The data report states that across all age levels, Florida teachers have worked within the Florida school systems approximately 13 years on average. While nearly 60% of Florida’s educators have received their bachelor’s degree, nearly 37% have gone on to pursue a masters degree while nearly 2% have completed doctorate programs in the field.
Options as far as salaries and location are as diverse as the education positions themselves. In the state of Florida, teacher salaries are established by individual school districts and are often based on years of experience as well as educational background. The following are examples of careers in the field of Education, as well as their respective salaries for Florida residents from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
- Social Science Teachers – Post-secondary – $70,910 annually
- Teacher Assistants – $22,740 annually
- Special Education Teachers – $52,730
- Preschool Teachers – $25,940
- Adult Education Instructors – $51,000
While teachers and educators in the state of Florida tend to stick to their posts for longer periods of time in general, the continuous opening of charter schools, new government plans to improve education, and a flexible salary scale across state districts are all reasons that Florida is continually attracting new educators. This makes Florida unique in the sense that other states across the country are experiencing severe budget cuts and laying off teachers as a result. Across the board, educators are finding a diverse professional pool of open positions in Florida that allow them to utilize specialized degrees and move forward in the industry.