A secondary school teacher at a public school must be licensed with a bachelor’s degree and by completing an approved teacher education program. Secondary school teachers at private schools do not need to be licensed but are required to have a bachelor’s degree to teach. For hard to fill positions, some states offer alternative licensing programs to secondary school teachers. Understanding a student’s needs, the ability to motivate them and communicate well, are important qualifications for secondary school teachers. Job prospects are best in rural and undesirable school districts as well as those teaching mathematics, science or bilingual education. Secondary school teachers play an important role for students during their formative years by fostering the intellectual and social development of their students. They provide their students with an environment and the proper tools to develop into responsible adults. Whether they use a hands-on approach with props or ask students to work together in groups, secondary school teachers can provide instruction to students that will help them later on in life. Secondary school teachers will prepare report cards, listen to oral presentations, observe a student’s performance and potential as well as meet with members of the staff and parents to go over any personal problems or the academic progress of a student. For students having trouble in a particular area, secondary school teachers will asses the problem and work with them to improve in that particular area. Secondary school teachers are responsible for delving into subjects deeper and teaching them more information about the world. They usually specialize in a particular subject, such as English or History, or teach career oriented subjects. Secondary school teachers may also be responsible for providing career guidance, help with job placement, and following up with students after they graduate. Secondary school teachers can also be responsible for overseeing field trips, study halls, and other classroom activities. They might also assist students in choosing colleges or careers. Resources such as the internet, computers and educational software are important for students and teachers. Teachers may use such resources to perform administrative and clerical duties such as recording grades while students use these resources to research and communicate with other students. Secondary school teachers may also work with students from different racial, religious, and ethnic backgrounds. Some schools offer training to teachers to help them understand different backgrounds of their students. Site-based management has become popular for secondary school teachers and parents who can make management decisions about the school. Some teachers are even involved in decisions such as budgeting, textbook choices or curriculum design. Many secondary school teachers can find their jobs rewarding as well as stressful and frustrating. Working with unmotivated students or in rundown classrooms can contribute to this frustration. Heavy workloads and large classrooms can also contribute to this stress. Secondary school teachers working for private schools will experience working in smaller classes with more motivated students due to the selective admissions process. Secondary school teachers can either work on their own or with other colleagues in teams. The usually workweek for a secondary school teacher consists of 40 hours over a 10-month school year with a 2-month break. Those working year round will work 8 weeks with a 1 week break as well as a 5 week midwinter break. Tenure is granted to secondary school teachers who have taught longer than 3 years. Though it doesn’t guarantee a job, it definitely provides some security. Secondary school teachers at public schools need a license from a teacher education program and bachelor’s degree while those teaching at private schools only need a bachelor’s degree. Secondary school...
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