Thinking of a Career in Education Outside of the Classroom?

Written by: Jamie Malinak, Senior Director at Norfolk Public Schools
Published on: Oct 1, 2018

Thinking about leaving the classroom?

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? How about 20? Many educators may have thoughts of becoming an administrator, a consultant, or working for a company that aligns with education such as a publishing company.

If you find yourself with aspirations like these, it is important to make yourself stand out from other educators with the same vision. Below are some simple steps you can take to ensure that you do.

  1. Teach multiple grade levels/subjects.

Although we all have our favorite grade or subject to teach, it is important for you to understand the nuances of multiple areas. Each grade has different milestones in child development, as well as requirements for state and federal accountability. Additionally, changing it up will give you a chance to work with a variety of fellow educators, which will allow you to fine-tune the art of working with adults. As a future administrator, this will become important.

  1. Seek out ways to be involved.

Depending on the size of your district, you may have the opportunity to volunteer to be on school-level or district-level committees. School districts are always looking for stakeholder input. Your participation not only gives you insight on how decisions are made, but it also gives you the chance to make connections with others in higher-ranking positions. Building bridges is never a bad thing!

  1. Get that degree.

If you haven’t gotten your masters degree, get it. If you already have it, go for the Education Specialist (Ed.S) or the Doctorate (Ed.D or Ph.D). Make yourself stand out.

  1. Stay abreast of educational trends.

It’s easy to get complacent in the day-to-day routine of teaching. Don’t forget to be that life-long learner that we encourage our students to be. Not being up-to-date on trends can easily be a deal-breaker during an interview for that coveted job you’re looking for 10 years from now.

5.   Learn about aspects of education outside of the classroom. 

Research about budgets, attend school board meetings, take a class on special education law, or learn about educational grants that drive many initiatives in a school district.  Not only will this knowledge help you stand out, you might also find your new educational passion!

There are many layers in education and the profession needs people with all skill sets. If your dreams take you beyond the classroom, start preparing now. When its time for that interview, check out a previous blog post of mine about how to ace it!


Jamie is an education professional with 20 years experience. She has worked as a classroom teacher, as a director for a large urban district, and as a specialist with a state education department. This wide array of experience gives her a unique perspective to share with current and future educators. 

The opinions expressed in the blog are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, TopSchoolJobs, or any of its publications.