As educators, we’re acutely aware of the significant demands of teaching. When we hear people outside the profession refer to teaching as “a little bit stressful,” we can’t help but groan. Education impacts lives—not products—and it’s definitely stressful! Many teachers have opted out of the classroom for the sake of their mental health, physical health, or other reasons. Though no longer teaching in the traditional sense, some still want to remain connected to education. Here are 21 teacher jobs (many suggested by teachers on our WeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook) that will get you out of the classroom, but not entirely out of the education profession.
Note: Heather G. suggests that you highlight skills instead of teaching positions if you apply for other industries. “Teachers are qualified for almost every job out there but just present your experience differently. Instead of ‘taught reading skills,’ say ‘created goal-oriented literacy projects that gathered valuable data for the school district.’ Teachers are smart and skilled workers that would be appreciated anywhere.”
1. Educational Policy Expert
If you’re considering leaving the classroom, there’s a chance it’s because you don’t agree with a mandated policy … or 30. Be the change by becoming a policy expert, a person who has hands-on administrative experience with a desire to review and adjust policies within educational institutions.
2. Curriculum Writer/Director
Want to improve the quality of what students learn? Interested in working with teachers? Informing curriculum is a great way to directly impact what goes on in the classroom, without actually being in it!
Many districts promote senior teachers to positions where they mentor and coach new and struggling teachers. Some coaches work at only one school, and some travel throughout the district. You’ll get to spend time in classrooms, but not be responsible for your own kiddos. Meghann R. reveals, “I’m a literacy coach for ELA educators. I coach teachers who are new to the profession or immensely struggling with their instructional strategies.” She started her coaching business after seeing how desperate fellow educators had become to simply keep their heads above water. “As someone who personally experienced those same struggles in my earlier years of education, I felt I could make a tremendous impact on others by offering my expertise where some are really struggling.”
4. Educational Consultant
There are several different ways in which an ed consultant helps schools and businesses. Kela L. says, “Lots of Ed-tech and consulting jobs out there that need a teacher’s experience. Think about all the software we used to transition to distance learning. All those companies are booming and may be hiring.”
5. Online Educator
Red tape and pressure still apply, but becoming an online educator has been a game changer for many people, especially now that we’ve all done it during quarantine. The pay, even when salaried, is less, but so is the stress. Kellie T. agrees. “I’m still teaching but virtually on a virtual platform. I’ve been working for a couple of years. I enjoy it because I teach what I want and how I want.”
6. Community Director
Think your local YMCA or youth center. A teacher is the perfect person to organize and facilitate educational and athletic programs and events.
7. Guidance Counselor
Guidance counselors are in a unique position to help students and make improvements to the school. While still working within a school district, counselors serve as personal advocates for students in need and are responsible for organizing programs to help the student body.
8. Education Manager
An education manager typically works within a company to facilitate teaching and learning activities. They may have administrative duties organize educational programs, obtain funding, instruct, and more! Karen L. says, “I’m an education manager for a nonprofit farm to school organization. I create, edit/revise lessons, and teach young adults how to teach garden lessons to students.”
9. Educational Curator for the Public
This role helps manage and implement educational events and programs at places like museums and zoos. Think teaching … along with animal interaction!
10. Work With Disabled Adults
Melissa M. shares, “If you have any medium to large size companies that employ people with disabilities, maybe start there. City and county offices, child protective services need SPED educated folks all the time.”
11. Event Planner
Were you the teacher who liked to plan all the events and functions at your school? If so, extend that passion in the event planning space. You’ll still get to interact with others and lead projects through to fruition.
12. Life Coach
Life coaching is similar to teaching in that you’ll be helping someone find their strengths and work to meet the goals they create. The only difference is you’ll be working with adults outside of a classroom setting.
13. Prison Educator
Many people shy away from this because they fear for their safety. Melissa E. says otherwise. “It’s a great gig! You get the best, most motivated students. They will go out of their way to keep you safe because they value you so much. Go for it!”
14. Freelance Writer
If you love to write and are a hard worker who will do the detective work to land writing gigs, then freelancing is an awesome option for you, and there are lots of education-related publishers looking for contributors. You can work from home, write when it fits your schedule, and make decent money. Susan G. says, “I became a copywriter when I retired after 32 years because I love to write and it combined my English and journalism major.”
If you don’t feel much like writing but still want to facilitate the distribution of content, you may want to look at becoming an editor. An editor typically works with writers to develop content that fits within the editorial guidelines of the publication (whether printed or online). Writing and management skills are a must! And if you worked within a particular subject, you may find your knowledge is even more in demand for editorial work.
16. College Academic Advisor
As a teacher, you’re well-versed at looking at the big picture when it comes to helping students succeed—both academically and personally. Being an academic advisor is often a good match for people who’ve left the teaching profession but don’t want to leave the education sector altogether. Note: Most universities prefer candidates with master’s degrees and relevant higher education experience.
17. Curriculum Service Rep
Publishing companies that create curriculum for school districts often employ former teachers as service representatives. Your job is to connect with and train educators on using the company’s products. The advantages of this position are that you get to use the knowledge you’ve gained as a classroom teacher (which makes it easier to connect with clients), you can usually work part-time, you control your schedule, and you make a lot more money.
Use your expertise as an instructor and start your own tutoring business. Yes, tutoring jobs are still teacher jobs, but if you can build up your own clientele, you can make serious money, with experienced teachers charging anywhere from $35–$50 per hour. Tap into those good relationships you’ve built over the years and make the transition to working at your own pace on your own terms. Michele T. shares, “I resigned after 20 years of teaching, and I’ve never been happier! My school families started reaching out to me almost immediately to ask if I’d be interested in becoming a personal tutor for their children. I designed individual plans based on their needs.”
For those who love books and/or encouraging research or a love of reading, this position might be for you! Librarians select books and educational material for schools as well as business, law, and public libraries. Generally, you’ll need a Master’s Degree in Library Science (MLS). China R. says, “Now I work in the children’s department of the local library, and I have never been happier.”
20. Health Coach
A health coach works to be a mentor and wellness authority to assist individuals in making food and lifestyle changes. Wendy A. shares, “I left teaching because I replaced my income within six months health coaching, and I am impacting so many lives. Most rewarding career I have ever had and freedom to work from anywhere.”
Did you teach a foreign language? Why not pivot that skill to being an interpreter or translator? You’ll be working on converting the spoken or written word in at least two languages, so your fluency level must be high.
Have any other post-teacher jobs to add to the list? Leave them in the comments, and we’ll update this post.