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How much paid time off do teachers get? What college classes do teachers take?

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Stephanie’s Answer

Hi Voc,

That's an interesting question. Paid time off is part of the contract you sign to work as a teacher. Each contract is unique to the school district, city, and/or state you live in. Usually, you are paid for holidays that occur during the school year. Most teachers are not paid during the summer unless they work for a school.

What college classes do you take? Again, that depends on the school you select to become a teacher.

Here's a list of the approved programs for South Carolina: https://ed.sc.gov/educators/teaching-in-south-carolina/epp/

You might also like this website with becoming a teacher in South Carolina: https://teach.com/careers/become-a-teacher/teaching-credential/state-requirements/south-carolina/

Good luck!

Stephanie
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Tom’s Answer

Teachers get a modest amount of time off and in some instances, they are not paid for that time off. An example of that would be between the end and the beginning of a new quarter or semester. As for what classes you should take, you will want to contact or go online to your state accrediting agency and find out the required courses or curriculum that you need to complete. It will also help to explore local colleges and universities that issue teaching credentials for the same information but with more specifics. I hope that helps. Best wishes. Tom
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David’s Answer

I am not a teacher, but my wife is, so I can provide some answers

Teachers get paid a salary, a set amount per year, so the hours you work does not factor into it. Depending on your district, they may pay you over 9 months, over 12 months, or give you the option. If you get paid over 9 months, then it is up to you to budget enough to cover the period when you are not paid.

Teachers get most school holidays off. A winter break, a spring break, and over the summer. The exact schedule depends on your district. For example, some districts around here have large Jewish populations. Important Jewish holidays are off. Other districts do not do that. Here in NJ, State law is that students must go to school 180 days a year. Most districts schedule between 183-185. There are also a few days (3 or4) during the year that are in-service days. Teachers are in but students are not. These are used for administrative things, personal development, team building, etc.

Many teacher work outside of school hours on school work - creating lesson plans, grading papers, helping students, etc. My wife puts in about 10-15 hours per week outside of her normal teaching hours.

The other thing to remember about teaching is that you are on a very rigid schedule. If you have classes scheduled, you are teaching. No taking 10 minutes to yourself because you had a rough day, no going to the bathroom in the middle of a class, no eating because you are hungry - you need to wait until your lunch period. Same thing goes for vacations. Some say "they get off all summer". Well yes, they do. But teachers get 2 or 3 personal days a year, that is it. So if you want to go somewhere in the fall, it can only be on a weekend. Guess when most vacation destinations are the most expensive and crowded? That's right, when school is out, so families can go. That just happens to be when teachers can go too. Just something to think about.

As far as education is concerned, you need a teaching certification/license to be a public school teacher, which usually requires a degree in education. There is a difference between being an expert in a subject, such as Chemistry, and actually being able to teach it. You do have to know something about the subject, but you also need to be trained to be a teacher. In the corporate world there are professional trainers. They know how to share information, engage a class, reinforce topics, keep interest etc. Very rarely do they really know anything in depth about the topic they are teaching.

It is a very rewarding career and my wife enjoys it very much
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Monica’s Answer

These are questions I can answer for you because I am a teacher. Becoming a teacher is a great choice and taking the right course is very important for pursuing this profession.

After graduating high school, I would highly encourage you to attend a university with a great education program. The 1st year or 2 will involve you taking classes that are the basic of you don’t have to take any prerequisites ( no college credit) . During the the 1st year, I would suggest getting with an advisor to make sure you are taking the right courses. Some of the courses I took were classes surrounding subject matter, classroom management strategies, and pedagogy. Theses types of classes were needed before entering the education program. After that point, there are some colleges that require an assessment to be completed and passed before being accepted and pursuing the student teaching process and certification test. The different assessments are call something different in different states but it can be transferred giving a teacher a chance to teach in the state.
As a teacher, I know every district is different when it comes to sick days. Some districts give you a set number in the beginning but distribute it throughout the nine months. Then. They may or may not give you personal days. So, really depends on the school and district when it comes to sick days.

I hope this gives you some inside information about teaching students.
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Mary’s Answer

Hello, I am from Washington State. Public school teachers in Western Washington urban and suburban school districts (ie. Seattle) work a specific number of days per contract year. A contracted salary is then divided into 12 monthly pay checks. Staff can earn supplements to this salary by taking on other school responsibilities such as coaching, bus duty, student council, etc.
I worked in a suburb of Seattle called Shoreline. I had the usual Federal holidays off, but was not paid for those days as they were not part of my contract year. Every district creates it on calendar year. We started at the beginning of September, had Veterans Day off and Thursday/Friday Thanksgiving off in November, two weeks off at Christmas, MLK Day in January, a week off mid/end of February, nothing in March, a week off in April and finish the year mid June.
Teachers sign a new contract for every new school year. We have strong unions in WA State that work with districts to negotiate contracts.
Re: college programs, you'll need to check with universities. I graduated in 1986! My experience is not what it is now😊
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