Jobs in Education

The United States needs well-trained teachers and education professionals more than ever. While elementary and secondary school enrollment is projected to increase between fall 2017 and fall 2027,1 the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) confirms an alarming shortage of well-qualified teachers.2

When you choose a career in education, you choose to positively impact the next generation of students. You choose to make a difference. And when you choose the University of Kansas School of Education and Human Sciences, you can rest assured your investment in education will pay off. Alumni across all of our online graduate education programs report a 36% average increase in salary three years after graduating.3

Data provided by The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts K-12 teaching occupations, including special education and principals, are growing an average of 8%, while instructional coordinators are expected to grow as fast as 13% in the job market between 2018 and 2028.4,5,6,7

We invite you to explore your options for careers in education.

With a KU degree, you're a lot more marketable. I have heard, through word of mouth and from those hiring, KU is such a top program, especially in the field of special education. KU puts us at the forefront for being hired over other candidates. I look forward to all of the opportunities to come and to utilizing the degree that I just earned.
Jennifer Cady '16
M.S.E. in High Incidence Disabilities (Teacher Track), Graduate Certificate: Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Earn More with a KU Online Education Master’s Degree

Master’s degrees in education provide a positive return on investment, increasing marketability and earnings.

KUSOE careers page 20 percent
With a master's in teaching, you immediately qualify for a median salary that's nearly 20% higher than the salary of your professional counterparts who only have a bachelor's degree.8
KU SOE careers page 44 percent
Education administrators had the highest percentage wage premium, with 44% high wages for master’s degree holders than for bachelor’s degree holders.8
KU SOE careers page 43 percent
The wage premium for preschool and kindergarten teachers was nearly as high, at 43%.8
KU SOE careers page 400k
Teachers make $400,000 extra over their lifetime with a master’s degree.9

Career Paths Within K-12 School Districts

The following reflect career paths for those who want to directly interact with students on a daily basis, lead and guide teachers, and/or influence the policies designed to improve classroom outcomes.

KU SOE career paths within the classroom
  • Preschool teacher
  • Elementary school teacher
  • Middle school teacher
  • High school teacher
  • Special education techer
KU SOE career paths in the administration
  • Assistant principal
  • Athletic director
  • Principal
  • Superintendant
KU SOE career paths in curriculum
  • Content coach
  • Curriculum developer
  • Grade-level chair
  • Instructional coordinator

“In my current role, I support teachers working with students with ASD. Thanks to my coursework and my professors, I have the knowledge and skills to take on this new role and succeed. I am so grateful for my time at KU and I'm really looking forward to the next steps in my career.”

Rachel Grossman
M.S.E. in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) (Behavioral Track)

$12,370 average base salary earned by teachers who hold master's degrees compared to those with bachelor's degrees
$98,750 mean annual education administrator salary
KUSOE careers graduate level

Specific licensure, certification and/or endorsement requirements vary by state, and every student's situation is different.

View Licensure Information

Careers in Education Outside the Traditional School Environment

An advanced degree in education doesn’t limit you to K-12 schools. The following roles reflect a few of the options available for those who want to pursue an alternative career in education in the public or private sector:

KUSOE careers page adult literacy icon
KU SOE careers education policy analyst icon
KUSOE careers art therapist icon
KU SOE careers education consultant icon
KUSOE careers state federal icon
KUSOE careers occupational therapist icon
Female educator works with student on laptop

Consider Your Career Goals

What do you want to accomplish in your education career? If you enjoy working with students in the classroom, additional skills and credentials can render you a much more effective teacher or advocate in your current role.

If you want to advance your career and pursue a role as a principal, dean or other type of administrator, a master’s degree is often required.


"I’ve received compliments from my administrators on the quality of my teaching and the knowledge that I bring. When I’ve gone to IEP meetings, I’ve been complimented on my knowledge of special education law, my knowledge of different disabilities and ways to support the students. That's all thanks to KU’s high incidence and ASD programs."

Sydney Castonguay ‘20
M.S.E. in High Incidence Disabilities (Teacher Track), Graduate Certificate: Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

The Value of KU’s Graduate Programs in Education12

100 percent career applicability

Career transformation and advancement

93 percent program satisfaction

Enrolling in the Secondary Education and Transition Master’s program was one of the wisest decisions I have ever made. I have been a Transition Coordinator for about 10 years, but once I enrolled in this program, I learned so much more. I have been able to—during the program and up to today—elevate the transition program at our school district.
Rita Brown '20
M.S.E. in Secondary Special Education and Transition
KU Graduates celebrate in cap and gowns

Benefits of Joining the Jayhawk Family

When you enroll in an online graduate program in education at the KU School of Education, ranked a Top 10 Best Education School (among public universities),13 you become an integral part of a forward-thinking community of educators—and a Jayhawk for life.

We support you both during your time in the program, through your assigned Student Success Coordinator, and after graduation, at which point you can continue to tap into the Jayhawk network and various career resources.

IMPORTANT DATES

APR
25
Application Deadline
April 25
Summer 2022 Term
MAY
9
Next Start
May 9
Summer 2022 Term

EVENTS

Sources
  1. Retrieved on May 8, 2019, from nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=65
  2. Retrieved on May 8, 2019, from epi.org/publication/the-teacher-shortage-is-real-large-and-growing-and-worse-than-we-thought-the-first-report-in-the-perfect-storm-in-the-teacher-labor-market-series/
  3. Based on a limited sample of self-reported data from alumni of the University of Kansas School of Education and Human Services online programs in education from graduating cohorts between 2019 and 2021.
  4. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/special-education-teachers.htm
  5. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm
  6. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/instructional-coordinators.htm
  7. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from bls.gov/ooh/management/elementary-middle-and-high-school-principals.htm
  8. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from bls.gov/careeroutlook/2015/article/should-i-get-a-masters-degree.htm
  9. Retrieved on November 4, 2021, from ed.gov/policy/highered/reg/hearulemaking/2011/collegepayoff.pdf
  10. Retrieved on May 8, 2019, from nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d17/tables/dt17_211.20.asp
  11. Retrieved on May 8, 2019, from www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes119032.htm
  12. Based on a limited sample of self-reported data from alumni of the University of Kansas School of Education online programs in education from graduating cohorts between 2016 and 2018.
  13. Retrieved on May 8, 2019, from usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/university-of-kansas-155317/overall-rankings