Your students aren’t the only ones who have the potential for personal growth, you know. You, their teacher, can also shoot for the stars in a bid to take your career to the next level.
In order to climb the ladder in your profession, you’re going to have to dedicate yourself to the field of teaching as you’ve never done before. This involves you giving up even more of your free time than you already do, constantly looking for ways to make your lessons far more intuitive and engaging, and learning how to network your way to success.
Here’s what you need to do to take your career in teaching to the next level:
Take your own education to a higher level.
As you are already a professional teacher, you will already have obtained a number of degrees — you will have your bachelor’s degree in your chosen subject and your teaching degree. In order to step it up a notch in your career, however, you’re going to have to head back to university or college in a bid to take your education to a higher level.
To the point, you’re going to have consider getting a master’s degree. With such a qualification, you will broaden your horizons with regards to the kinds of establishments you can teach in — you will be able to teach at a four-year vocational college, for instance. If you don’t necessarily feel the need to seek pastures new, you can also be sure that an MA will stand you in good stead should a promotion become available in your current department. Put it this way; you will be deemed a far more suitable candidate than your colleagues if you trump them with a higher degree.
You will find masters degrees for teachers being offered at most educational institutions, one of which is Southern Cross University, so you can rest assured there are plenty of options when it comes to taking your education to a higher level. Whether you specialize in Educational Leadership or Educational Wellbeing, once your time back in education is over, you will step back into your career with a skill set that is far superior to the one you had before.
Become a personal tutor.
Becoming a personal or private tutor will benefit you in your bid to take your career to the next level in so many different ways. For one, it will allow you to familiarize yourself with an array of different students on a one-to-one basis, which will then help you to get to grips with assisting individuals rather than whole classes. As well as this personal benefit, tutoring will also show you to be willing to go the extra mile in order to give your students the best possible education. As long as you note your experiences as a personal tutor down on your resume, this effort that you put in will not go unnoticed by future potential employers.
When it comes to finding opportunities to provide one-on-one tutoring to students, first, try taking the idea to your head of department or your school’s principal. Ask them if there are any opportunities for you to offer private tuition during lunch periods or after the traditional school day is over. If you find opportunities like this few and far between in your school, fear not, as you don’t have to up and leave entirely. There are learning academies out there that are always looking for personal tutors — by signing up to such an academy, it won’t be your students that you teach but you will have flexible hours, and you may even be able to work from home.
Be constantly ready for inspection.
Be it an external inspection, i.e., an inspection from an Education Standards institution, or be it an inspection from your superiors, if you want to prove your worth as a teacher, you need to be ready for it. This means never allowing your standard of teaching to slip — no matter the time of day or the time of the year, you should ensure that every class that you teach is of the highest possible quality. Quite simply, as you never know when an inspection is going to take place, you have to teach every lesson like it is, in fact, being inspected.
Aim to become a school administrator.
Who says you cannot reach the very top of your career ladder and become a school administrator? The only thing holding you back from becoming an assistant or even head principal is you!
One of the factors that may, in fact, be holding you back is your inability to schmooze and network. Whether you like it or not, your teaching abilities alone will not be enough to see you reach administration level, so you need to be able to communicate with your superiors. Something else that you can do to prove your worth in this instance is take on more responsibility— whether it’s agreeing to take on another lesson or agreeing to grade more papers, as long as it doesn’t stretch you too thin, do it.
If you truly want to become a school administrator, then you also need to know when it’s time to move on. If the opportunities just aren’t arising in your school, and if they don’t look like they’re going to arise any time soon, seek pastures new. At the end of the day, the only loyalty you have is to yourself and your career — in twenty years’ time, you’ll be happy that you followed your head rather than your heart in this instance.
To take your career in teaching as far as it can possibly go, you’re going to need to put the above advice into practice. This may mean stepping back into education to receive a higher degree; it could mean becoming a personal tutor, or readying yourself for inspection at all times.
No matter how you get there, you can see your career progress sooner than you thought possible.