Many teachers chose their career because they find teaching to be a fulfilling path. However, like any career, the reason teachers wake up every morning, other than their students, is to earn money.
Some consider getting their master of education or doctor of education in order to raise their earning potential. Graduate school is the right move for some, but not for others. For teachers who are considering money rather than the availability of more opportunities, it is important to look at pay rates as educators become students.
There are some people who believe that teachers should not be rewarded financially for earning their master of education, but rewarded based upon the performance of their students. Higher tests scores would lead to higher salaries, regardless of the educational background of the teacher.
When the New York Times interviewed several educators on this topic, there were many opinions. C. Kent McGuire, dean of the Temple University College of Education, said, “Like so many districts, we are persuaded that university-based preparation is key to acquiring the knowledge and skill we value and we are willing to pay a premium for it.”
However, T.C. Williams High School English teacher Patrick Welsh argued, “I have seen administrators who have had trouble writing clear letters home to parents and who murdered the English language in public go about brandishing their degrees and insisting on being called ‘Doctor.’”
It’s clear from these comments that no matter the level of education a teacher has, what is most important is that they are good at what they do.
According to an article from the Wall Street Journal, “The nation spends an estimated $15 billion annually on salary bumps for teachers who earn master's degrees.”
The article went on to say, “The national average salary for a teacher with five years of experience and a bachelor's degree was $39,700 in 2008, compared with $46,500 with a master's, according to the federal data.”
However, the article also notes that many states are pushing to do away with automatic pay bumps for teachers with a master of education and focusing on the performance of their students. In essence, school districts are looking at the educational background of applicants, but once teachers are hired, they want to see the positive outcomes of their master of education.
According to the Houston Chronicle, “In 2010, the average salary for teachers in Pennsylvania was $60,536, and the average for teachers in Florida was $46,702.”
Location and experience are just two additional factors that can affect your earnings as a teacher. For some, a change in location may be more lucrative that an advanced degree. However, teachers with a master of education do earn more than teachers who only have their bachelor’s degree.
If you’re considering your master of education, you should concentrate not just on how it will help your earning potential, but how it will make you a better teacher. Master’s degrees open up more opportunities, allow you to specialize your learning and help you learn the latest and greatest techniques in education.
To learn more about the Texas Wesleyan master of education degree, contact one of our admissions counselors today.