Time for Higher Pay? Teachers Are More Likely to Work Second Jobs


After the school day ends, many teachers are heading to second jobs to make ends meet.

According to a new study from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the sad truth is that teachers are more likely than non-teachers to work multiple jobs. The report provides a variety of reasons why educators, who on average make $56,039 per year, might be more likely to seek a supplementary income.

More: Op-Ed: For First-Year Teachers, It’s Sink or Swim

Teachers, according to the study, were more likely to be married and have dependents. Where as 45 percent of non-teachers were unmarried with no dependents, only 35 percent of teachers were in the same category. The responsibility of having to provide for others makes additional income appealing.

The study also found that STEM teachers were more likely than other teachers to work a second job.

Earlier this year, President Obama announced that he wants to spend one billion dollars to hire more STEM educators who would be enticed by receiving an additional $20,000 on top of their salaries.

Findings from the report suggest that we may need to do more to entice STEM teachers.

As Sarah D. Sparks says in Education Week, "This data adds a complicating factor to districts looking to beef up teacher training or change work hours as part of school improvement programs."

At the Democratic National Convention, Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s speech stressed the importance of our education system's ability to prepare all of our children for the jobs of tomorrow. In July, Obama said “If America is going to compete for the jobs and industries of tomorrow, we need to make sure our children are getting the best education possible.  Teachers matter, and great teachers deserve our support.”

If this is the case, shouldn't more be done so teachers don't have to take on second jobs which could take them away from the task at hand?

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Andrew Freeman is a California native with a degree in history from UCLA. He’s covered a wide range of topics for TakePart, but is particularly interested in politics and policy.  Email Andrew |@natureofdabeast | TakePart.com