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Careers in Education to 2020

Updated on May 12, 2011

The Federal BLS Is Not All There Is

Will Education jobs increase in America through 2018 or 2020 as Healthcare jobs are sure to do? If interested in such a career, you may find it shrewd and effective to pursue a course of study leading to a teaching position in a heath and medical complex of some sort.

From Spring 2010 through Spring 2011 (see graph below), the industries that experienced the largest increases in jobs posted were 1) Transportation 91% and 2) Manufacturing 60%, rather unexpectedly. Healthcare and IT also increased significantly, as expected long-term. Educational positions did not appear among the top increases. Education was 11th out of 13 industries, with a 22% increase in listings - and not a decrease as in #13 Real Estate, which pulled a -9%. However, I do not know how many of the 22% were replacement jobs for retirees and others that left teaching.

The US Federal Labor Department and its divisions produce 10-year employment projections for all industry clusters and job titles recognized by the government at the rate of once every two years, overlapping the previous decade's projections by two years. The US States prepare their own projections and even some cities do their own (within their own city plans of 5 years' to sometimes up to 30 years' span). The three separate sets of projections may agree or they may not. In addition, the local Chambers of Commerce have business news available on their sites that may shoot holes in the projections after publications. Thus, there are a lot of resources to watch for staying informed, other than the BLS.


Where are Teaching Jobs Right Now?

Teaching jobs include:

  • Tutoring - Private (K-12 and even for pre-school - I know at least one who does this); school-based; proprietary-business based; other.
  • Pre-School - Usually uncertified and low wages.
  • K-12 - Public and Private schools.
  • Vocational Schools.
  • Proprietary Edcuation and Training Schools.
  • Non-Profit Education and Training Schools and Adult Education (GED, ESOL, vocational certifications).
  • Child and Adult Enrichment classes.
  • Postsecondary Education - Colleges, Universities Professional Schools.
  • Coporate Training Departments.
  • MIlitary Training Departments.

Despite all of these categories, Education as an industry has not/is not creating a lot of new jobs in the 2000s and 2010s.

Comparison - Job Listings 2006 - 2011

Examination of the listings gathered by aggregators from all Internet job postings as available shows us:

  • "Teacher" listings in the USA in May 2011 numbers about 47,000 and largely in NYC, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Washington DC, Marietta GA, Tucson, Los Angeles, Denver, and Atlanta. The fastest-growing cities in the US will be the ones that will need the most preschool and K-12 teachers from 2011 - 2020. Money Magazine,, Bloomberg and others produce of list of these yearly and they do not always agree. Teacher listings decreased from March 2010 to February 2011, and began to increase.
  • "Instructor" listings increased greatly from July 2006 to January 2010 and began to Fall. In may 2011, we have just over 41,000 listings in large clusters at Houston, NYC, Chicago, Atlanta, San Diego, Dallas, Phoenix, and Washington DC.
  • "Professor" listings (declining since January 2010) that include Assistants and Associates include only 11,000 in largest clusters in NYC., Athens GA, Greenville NC, Ann Arbor MI, Boston, Atlanta,Cincinnati (a part of the large Ohio Space Corridor), Chicago, St. Louis, Philadelphia, and Baltimore.Schools often hire in the Spring for Fall.
  • "Trainer" listings have increased since Summer 2010 to 30,000+ in May 2011 and appear mostly in NYC, Houston, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, Dallas, Washington DC, Phoenix, Cleveland OH, Boston, and Philadelphia.
  • The demand for Tutors increased from low figures for years up by 950% in January 2011 in major cities in New York, Texas, Arizona, and the Midwest. May 2011 listings total over 18,000. The largest demand is in Montessori Schools, Preschools, tutoring companies, computer training schools, community colleges, online schools, and private families.


Federal BLS Projections for Teachers

Looking at the Top 20 Jobs projected top increase most in numbers:

  • Postsecondary Teachers (college level) is Number 10 with 257,000 jobs to be created between 2008 to 2018, an average of 25,700 per year. It is mid-2011 and we have 11,000 listings. Let's see what happens between now and Autumn. We may keep pace with the projects, considering that "Instructor" is often employed in this category in colleges, etc.
  • Elementary School Teachers (not Spec. Ed) - Number 12 with 244,000 new jobs. This is an average of 24,400 per year. It is be interesting to watch listings over the next year.
  • Teacher Assistants - Number 30 with 135,000 jobs, an average of 13,500 per year. The demand for this job as shown in actual job listings has continued to decrease continually in large numbers since Autumn 2010, with only about 8,000 listings in May 2011.

Altogether, only three categories of Education positions are projected to show major growth (meaning in the Top 30) and the last caregory of the three is not increasing, but decreasing.

What to Do

If interested in a Career in Education, read job listings at major job seach and aggregator engines and look at trends and job titles. In addition, speak with someone at your State Board of Education, your local college of education, and your town's school district office; and ask their opinions about the trending of future educational jobs in your area. The Chamber of Commerce should have sata about population growth rates and the possibity of new teaching jobs related to that. Construction of new public and private schools in a fast-growing city will likely mean new jobs, for instance. On the other hand, closing of schools may mean a decline. If teaching is not a growth industry in your town, the Chamber should be able to tell you which industries are in that status.


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    • susannah42 profile image


      7 years ago from Florida

      Good information for those just entering the job market. thanks.

    • dusy7969 profile image


      7 years ago from San Diego, California

      This hub is very excellent.This hub is provide many lot of information.Patty, you are an excellent source of info and I will probably tap your knowledge again in the future.Thanks a lot for this wonderful and useful sharing.

    • Lacy Lou profile image

      Lacy Lou 

      7 years ago from Kansas

      I want to be a teacher with all of my heart. I have 55 credit hours under my belt and need only 60 to be a substitute. I am aware that I won't be 'rolling in the dough' and I may get stressed out at times but I can't wait to aid in the shaping of young minds. There are so many great things to learn and the best time is when you're young! I can't wait to be a teacher! However, I do realize that the hardest part about being a teacher could be getting and keeping the job.

    • Support Med. profile image

      Support Med. 

      7 years ago from Michigan

      It's sad that educators are having a tough time. We need them greatly. It is, however, an option to consider for those who really want to lead in such a way. v/r

    • ccdursina profile image

      Carolina Dursina 

      7 years ago from Spring Green WI

      Great, informational hub, thank you!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile imageAUTHOR

      Patty Inglish MS 

      7 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Thanks for these interesting comments - and I will indeed do a Part II later in the year. Thanks for the suggestion!

    • profile image

      Fay Paxton 

      7 years ago

      Excellent as always, Patti. I just hope we develop more respect for our educators.

      up/very useful

    • webstudio2ucom profile image


      7 years ago from Baltimore, Maryland

      Good material. I will remember it

    • profile image

      Mary E. Ghilani 

      7 years ago

      Thank you both for your comments. I am the director of career services at a community college in PA and as such am always trying to keep up on the latest projections so I can intelligently and accurately respond to questions from students and parents. Patty, you are an excellent source of info and I will probably tap your knowledge again in the futue. Thanks.

    • L.L. Woodard profile image

      L.L. Woodard 

      7 years ago from Oklahoma City

      My hat is off to anyone who has been, is, or will be a teacher. Important persons in developing lives, for sure.

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 

      7 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      Lot's of info in this hub!

    • Georgiakevin profile image


      7 years ago from Central Georgia

      As a special educator who has taught in middle Schools,Junior highs and High School for 15 years in three states I was interested in your Hub. You need a part II to this Hub. It is still too early to know how bad things will be. There are still school districts announcing their rifts. There are some teaching positions that have really taken a hit this year. Those of us who have positions for next year have taken pay cuts either outright or through furloughs. I am looking at 8 furlough days.

      Para-professionals and tutors make considerably less than teachers do. Not many private schools pay livable wages either. I have considered teaching private schools but could not feed my family if I did.

      Math teachers and Special Educators are in demand but none of us are safe.

      I love my career but these are tough times. If someone wants to be an educator do it fr the right reasons.


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