Are you interested in getting into education? There’s a lot more to it than being a classroom teacher. When you have the right education yourself, you’ll find that there are lots of ways that you can get involved in supporting the education and learning system and improving the life chances of others. These are just a small sample of the roles that don’t get noticed but that really make a difference.
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In school education, everything begins with the curriculum. The role of a curriculum developer is to look at what needs to be taught in each grade and work out the most effective way of approaching that. This needs to be done on an ongoing basis because new guidelines are always being passed down, new technologies are always emerging, and new research is always being published that may demonstrate that established approaches are getting poor results or that new techniques could achieve more. As well as staying on top of all this, curriculum developers assess teaching strategies and ensure that teachers have the up-to-date skills they need to do their jobs effectively. To do this job, you will need at least a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction, educational administration or teaching, and you will need to be committed to your own ongoing learning. The average salary for a curriculum developer is $63,042.
Once there’s a curriculum in place, it has to be implemented. This means that individual courses and modules need to be developed to enable students to get to grips with each subject as effectively as possible. Instructional designers work on courses to suit general classes and also design them specifically for groups facing particular challenges, such as those not studying in their native language, or for individuals with special needs. You will need at least a bachelor’s degree, and a master’s degree will give you more options over where you work – there are courses at Bryant & Stratton that are well suited to this, and because Bryant & Stratton College takes a flexible approach to learning methods, these are well suited to people who are trying to hold down full-time jobs or manage family commitments while they study. The average salary for an instructional designer is $57,599.
You might think that school counsellors spend most of their time helping students to deal with problems and trying to get through to those who are being disruptive, but in fact they have a wide range of responsibilities. They’re there to help students prepare for life in the wider world by getting the kind of practical, personally focused support that classroom education can’t provide. This includes helping them to plan their future careers and making sure that they have the social skills they’ll need to deal with different kinds of people. It involves helping students to work around disabilities and overcome disadvantaged backgrounds, manage drug or alcohol problems and cope with distressing events in their lives. To take on this role, you’ll normally be required to have a master’s degree in counseling plus a certificate in school counseling. The average salary for a school counsellor is $50,616.
If you want to make a difference to those who have fallen through the cracks, there is nowhere that dedicated educators are more sorely needed than in prisons. This is a challenging role because it requires taking on a lot of different responsibilities usually taken care of by different people: planning a course, working out how to adapt it to a group of people with a high rate of special needs (60% of prisoners are functionally illiterate), persuading those people that they do have the ability to learn, and actually teaching – all in a tightly controlled environment where classes are never allowed to overrun and there’s no chance to work one to one. When it works, however, it can turn lives around, prevent reoffending, mend family relationships, and help people with life sentences to cope. A basic degree in teaching is all you will need. The average salary for a prison educator is $48,176.
With these and many more options to choose from, it should be clear that there are many more career possibilities in education than being a schoolteacher. These are all roles that require hard work, commitment and ongoing learning, but they give you the chance to make a big positive impact on the world. Your work will give other people opportunities that they never would have had and help some of them go on to do amazing things in their careers.