Vocational teachers are also known as technical career teachers or technology teachers. They instruct students in skills that range from auto repair and carpentry to communications, electronics and other variants in the technology field. In some communities vocational teachers and vocational schools will focus on training for jobs that are available through large employers in the area. Often partnerships develop between vocational schools or vocational programs in public schools, and those employers. The vocational teacher often plays a role in establishing that relationship.
In many states vocational teachers are required to meet the same educational standards as teachers in the classic academic fields. Some states will allow credit for experience however and will license vocational teachers without a bachelor's degree. Some coursework may be required in addition to the experience. Vocational teachers in private schools may also need licensing as a condition of the school's accreditation.
There were about 96,000 vocational teachers in secondary schools in 2006, according to U.S. Department of Labor data. There were an additional 16,000 teaching in middle schools.
The Department of Labor projects a slower than average growth rate for this profession over the next several years. While that may be the case in the public school system, vocational educators and trainers will be in high demand as technology continues to transform our businesses and our economy. A new class of vocational professionals is developing alongside the classic professions of carpentry, auto repair, electrical and plumbing, and other construction skills.
Lowest 10% $34,890
Median Salary $51,580
Highest 10% $77,950