Myths & Facts

Myth: Teachers aren’t paid very well.
Fact: Starting teacher salaries in Minnesota are some of the highest in the country, with clear paths for promotion.

Though salaries vary by district and state, Minnesota teachers are on the higher end of the payscale. The annual mean wage for Minnesota elementary teacher’s was $62,000 in 2016 [BLS], and slightly higher for middle school, high school, and special education teachers. A teacher’s salary is determined by two factors: the number of years they have been teaching and what level of education they have completed. There is often a significant pay raise that comes with having completed a master’s degree. There are also opportunities for advancement into administrative roles, such as becoming a specialist, curriculum leader, principal or superintendent.

Myth: I won’t be able to get a job, or I won’t be able to keep a job long enough to gain tenure in a district.
Fact: University of Minnesota students are sought after by districts for their training and expertise.

The field of teaching can definitely be competitive, but administrators look for students that are trained in our well-respected teacher education programs. Our programs also include a master of education degree which makes you a more competitive job candidate.

Certain types of teachers, such as science, math, dance, theatre, special education, and agricultural education are particularly needed. CEHD Career Services offers great tips for increasing your marketability as a teacher (no matter which area you’re pursuing.

Myth: Your teaching license is only valid in Minnesota.
Fact: Minnesota-licensed teachers can easily gain their teaching license in other states or countries with no or minimal additional coursework.

Students who complete both their license and their master’s degree through the U of M are especially competitive outside of Minnesota. The best way to learn more about state-specific teacher licensing requirements outside of Minnesota is to visit a state’s department of education website.

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