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Career and Education Opportunities for High School Teachers in Birmingham, Alabama

If you want to be a high school teacher, the Birmingham, Alabama area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. There are currently 12,420 working high school teachers in Alabama; this should grow 13% to about 13,970 working high school teachers in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for high school teachers, which sees this job pool growing by about 8.8% over the next eight years. High school teachers generally instruct students in secondary public or private schools in one or more subjects at the secondary level, such as English, mathematics, or social studies.

The average wage in the general category of Primary and Secondary School Education jobs is $11 per hour or $42,588 per year in Alabama, and an average of $11 per hour or $45,804 per year nationwide. Incomes for high school teachers are better than in the overall category of Primary and Secondary School Education in Alabama, and better than the overall Primary and Secondary School Education category nationally. Jobs in this field include: history teacher, bilingual teacher, and accounting teacher.

There are fifteen schools of higher education in the Birmingham area, including five within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree to start your career as a high school teacher. Given that the most common education level for high school teachers is a Bachelor's degree, you can expect to spend about four years studying to be a high school teacher if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: High School Teacher

High School Teacher video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, high school teachers instruct students in secondary public or private schools in one or more subjects at the secondary level, such as English, mathematics, or social studies. They also may be designated according to subject matter specialty, such as typing instructors, commercial teachers, or English teachers.

High school teachers establish and enforce rules for behavior and methods for maintaining order among students. They also attend staff meetings and serve on committees, as required. Equally important, high school teachers have to use computers, audio-visual aids, and other equipment and materials to supplement presentations. They are often called upon to ready students for later grades by encouraging them to explore learning opportunities and to persevere with challenging tasks. They are expected to adapt teaching methods and instructional materials to meet students' varying needs and interests. Finally, high school teachers administer standardized ability and achievement tests and interpret results to establish students' strengths and areas of need.

Every day, high school teachers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for high school teachers to ready and implement remedial programs for students requiring extra help. They are often called upon to instruct and monitor students in the use of equipment and materials to inhibit injuries and damage. They also attend professional meetings and teacher training workshops to maintain and improve professional competence. They are sometimes expected to maintain accurate and complete student records as required by laws and administrative regulations. Somewhat less frequently, high school teachers are also expected to instruct through lectures and demonstrations in one or more subjects, such as English or social studies.

High school teachers sometimes are asked to formulate and supervise class projects, field trips, visits by guest speakers, or other experiential efforts, and guide students in learning from those efforts. They also have to be able to perform administrative duties such as assisting in school libraries, hall and cafeteria monitoring, and bus loading and unloading and formulate and conduct efforts for a balanced program of instruction and work time that provides students with opportunities to monitor and investigate. And finally, they sometimes have to meet with parents and guardians to consider their children's progress and to establish priorities for their children and their resource needs.

Like many other jobs, high school teachers must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Elementary School Teacher. Teach pupils in public or private schools at the elementary level basic academic, social, and other formative skills.
  • Graduate Research Assistant. Assist department chairperson, faculty members, or other professional staff members in college or university by performing teaching or teaching-related duties, such as teaching lower level courses, developing teaching materials, preparing and giving examinations, and grading examinations or papers. Graduate assistants must be enrolled in a graduate school program. Graduate assistants who primarily perform non-teaching duties, such as laboratory research, should be reported in the occupational category related to the work performed.
  • Kindergarten Teacher. Teach elemental natural and social science, personal hygiene, and literature to children from 4 to 6 years old. Promote physical, mental, and social development. May be required to hold State certification.
  • Middle School Teacher. Teach students in public or private schools in one or more subjects at the middle, intermediate, or junior high level, which falls between elementary and senior high school as defined by applicable State laws and regulations.
  • Preschool Teacher. Instruct children (normally up to 5 years of age) in activities designed to promote social, physical, and intellectual growth needed for primary school in preschool, day care center, or other child development facility. May be required to hold State certification.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: High School Teacher Training

Birmingham Southern College - Birmingham, AL

Birmingham Southern College, 900 Arkadelphia Road, Birmingham, AL 35254. Birmingham Southern College is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,458 students and an admission rate of 69%. Birmingham Southern College has 4 areas of study related to High School Teacher. They are:

  • Secondary Education and Teaching, bachelor's degree.
  • Teacher Education, Multiple Levels, bachelor's degree which graduated 13 students in 2008.
  • Art Teacher Education, bachelor's degree.
  • Music Teacher Education, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.

Miles College - Fairfield, AL

Miles College, 5500 Myron Massey Blvd, Fairfield, AL 35064. Miles College is a small college located in Fairfield, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 1,773 students. Miles College has 4 areas of study related to High School Teacher. They are:

  • English/Language Arts Teacher Education, bachelor's degree.
  • Mathematics Teacher Education, bachelor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • Social Science Teacher Education, bachelor's degree.
  • Biology Teacher Education, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.

University of Montevallo - Montevallo, AL

University of Montevallo, Station 6001, Montevallo, AL 35115-6000. University of Montevallo is a small university located in Montevallo, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,030 students and an admission rate of 78%. University of Montevallo has a master's degree program in Secondary Education and Teaching which graduated fifty-four students in 2008.

Samford University - Birmingham, AL

Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35229-2240. Samford University is a small university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,469 students and an admission rate of 89%. Samford University has 3 areas of study related to High School Teacher. They are:

  • Teacher Education, Multiple Levels, bachelor's degree which graduated 26 students in 2008.
  • Physical Education Teaching and Coaching, bachelor's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • History Teacher Education, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.

University of Alabama at Birmingham - Birmingham, AL

University of Alabama at Birmingham, Administration Bldg Suite 1070, Birmingham, AL 35294-0110. University of Alabama at Birmingham is a large university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,149 students and an admission rate of 85%. University of Alabama at Birmingham has 4 areas of study related to High School Teacher. They are:

  • Secondary Education and Teaching, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated four and sixty-five students respectively in 2008.
  • Art Teacher Education, master's degree which graduated 50 students in 2008.
  • Health Teacher Education, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated seventeen and six students respectively in 2008.
  • Physical Education Teaching and Coaching, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated eighteen and twelve students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Childbirth Educator Certification: The traditional program is designed for childbirth educators with less than two years experience.

For more information, see the International Childbirth Education Association website.

LICENSES

Teacher, Classroom

Licensing agency: AL Department of Education
Address: P O Box 302101, Montgomery, AL 36130-2101

Phone: (334) 353-8567
Website: AL Department of Education

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.