The art of teaching has been around dating back to ancient times. It is one of the few professions that has consistently offered educators a place in the working world. From the the era of ancient Greece and Aristotle’s remarkable teachings, to your favorite high school educator, teachers are a valuable, and essential asset to our overall upbringing. However, like any other profession, there are multiple myths that are applied to being an educator. Here are a few of the top myths you might find about teaching.
Teachers Work Shorter Days
One of the most common, and a personal favorite, is the “teachers work less”, myth. In lieu of typical school hours (around 8:00AM to 3:00PM), many people think a teachers job ends when the final bell rings. This is wildly untrue, and ultimately unrealistic. A teacher’s workload consists of multiple tasks on top of teaching students what is on that days lesson plan. It is common for teachers to arrive to school early, if students have to be in at 8:00AM, teachers need to be there earlier to prepare for the arrival of their students. Additionally, it is the same for after hours. Many teachers stay well after the bell rings and the students go home for the day. Grading papers, offering students extra help if needed, and preparing for the next day, usually gets done after hours. If you know a teacher, keep in mind their day is probably a lot longer than it seems!
Teachers are Fully Responsible for a Students Education
Teachers play a large role in the educational development of a student. A teacher can provide extra assistance to a child that may be struggling academically, and see drastic improvements. However, it is a team effort between a students parents or guardian, and the educators, to really make a solid impact. Parents and teachers working together holds the student accountable, and can assist with improving motivation and the overall communication between both parties.
All Teachers are Fairly Paid
The national average salary for a starting teacher from 2016-2017 was $38,617, according to the National Education Association. When compared to the national average salary for graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 2016, there is roughly a $10,000 difference. Starting teachers are often faced with having to maintain a second job on the nights or weekends due to living with a lower salary.
Paid Summers Off
This final myth is technically made up of two. The first part: “Teachers get summers off.” This is simply not true. By a technicality, a teachers work place is “closed” during the short summer months; however, their job is not nearly close to over. Often during the summer months, teachers enroll in workshops, or have end of the year meetings to prepare for the following year. Additionally, a few weeks before school starts back up, many teachers are in their classrooms preparing decorations, lesson plans, and going over curriculum. This leads to the second part: “‘Paid’ Summers Off”. Again, simply not true. Most educators are typically contracted for 175-190 days. This means, that is how many days they are paid for. While some teachers have the option to prorate their pay, others withhold a portion of their pay that will sustain them throughout the summer.