Teaching is a noble profession that requires a delicate blend of sharing a wealth of knowledge with kindness and patience. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” If you’re getting ready to retire or you’re a recently retired teacher, there are plenty of fantastic career opportunities awaiting you.
Read on to discover some of the best career options for retired teachers, so you can expand your horizons and spread your wings.
Keep your teaching skills fresh by becoming a career coach. This fulfilling career allows you to work with people to help them choose a career path that’s right for their needs and skills. You’ll work closely with people to determine what their goals are and how you can help them achieve them through a new career.
You’ll also work with people to help them improve their skills and learn how to communicate with others while homing in on problem-solving. Career coaches may also work with specific organizations to help train their staff and show them how to achieve business goals together as a team. This career is a great fit for retired teachers since you’ll continue to teach and train people to become the absolute best they can be.
While having a bachelor’s degree in counseling is helpful for this career, many teachers are hired thanks to their long-standing background in teaching others and providing guidance. The national average salary for a career coach is an impressive $51,145 to $72,691 per year. Much of the higher end is based on additional pay to include things like bonuses, profit sharing, and/or commission.
2. A Natural Next-Step for Retired Teachers is a Tutor
If you’re still passionate about teaching, then a tutoring career is a great choice. This job entails reviewing assignments that students complete and working with them to help them through any difficulties they face. You’ll teach your tutoring clients skills like how to take notes, test preparation methods, and how they can retain key information.
The end goal is to help people improve their grades and learning skills, so they’re set up for success. Thanks to the increase in the popularity of virtual tutoring, you may be able to do this job remotely from home. For those retired teachers interested in tutoring, you’ll need to obtain a tutoring certificate.
This will demonstrate that you’re updated on the latest teaching techniques regarding the specific subject or subjects you’re interested in tutoring. Most tutors are paid hourly, with a national average of $18.31 that can go up to $40. The demand for tutors is quite high.
In fact, the current job outlook is quite high with an average annual growth of a staggering 17.31 percent.
3. Step Out of Your Comfort Zone as a Paralegal
Many retired teachers choose the path of a paralegal career since it requires excellent grammar and good organizational skills. As a paralegal, you’ll help an attorney by keeping their paperwork organized, performing legal research, and composing documents for different court cases. Paralegals are vital to attorneys, and the work often contributes to a successful case.
There are state requirements to work as a paralegal, so check with your specific state to find out more. Retired teachers already have state certifications in teaching, which may be enough to work as a paralegal in certain states. The average salary for this job varies by state but begins at around $40,000 to $60,000 or more.
Depending on the type of attorney you work for, additional training could be required. For example, criminal attorneys need paralegals with more extensive training than those working for attorneys in family law or personal injury. The job outlook for paralegal careers is higher than most, with a projected growth of about 12% by the year 2030.
4. Showcase Your Expertise as an Adjunct Professor
If you’re ready to move up in the world of teaching, a role as an adjunct professor is a great choice. This job allows you to work part-time as an adjunct professor at your choice of university. These teachers are considered contract employees who teach specific courses to students every semester.
You’ll create a specific course plan that you present to students during the first week of class. You’ll also be responsible for the student’s learning progress throughout the rest of the semester. Adjunct professors must have a solid knowledge of the subject they teach and must be able to grade papers, provide feedback for students, and create their own lesson plans.
All adjunct professors need at least a bachelor’s degree, and, of course, some prior teaching experience. If you want to receive a higher salary, getting your master’s or doctoral degree will get you there. While teaching college-level students prior isn’t always a prerequisite, it’s usually preferred.
Consider getting a part-time job as a teacher at your local community college to get some experience. Entry-level adjuncts may make around $37,00 per year, but the median salary is much more impressive at $80,863. The need for post-secondary teachers is growing with an outlook of approximately 11% through 2028.
5. Grab That Pen and Start Your Career as a Writer
If you have a passion for the written word, then a writing career could be in the stars for you. Even if you didn’t retire as an English teacher, writing is a great career choice for those in education. This job title varies widely depending on the clients you work for and what you choose to write about.
Your content will be uniquely tailored to your specific niche, which can range from technical writing to penning your very own work of fiction. Writing requires a lot of research, which is why this option is a great fit for retired teachers. Formal education or a degree isn’t always required in order to be a writer, but building a personal portfolio is highly recommended.
Writing is a competitive field, but there’s always more room for new talent if you know where to look. The more you can expand your client base, the more money you’ll earn. Many retired teachers also enjoy becoming self-published authors and earn residual income from book sales.
As you can imagine, the pay for writers varies wildly. Much of this depends on the client you work for, the volume of work you do, and what you’re publishing. You’ll likely make between around $49,000 to $67,000 per year, but you could earn more as you become more established.
Writing has an average job outlook of about 8% per year. As technology changes, the demand for skilled writers who publish online will likely be higher.
6. Shine Your Teaching Light as an Educational Consultant
Even if you’re finished teaching, you can choose a fulfilling career as an educational consultant. This job involves advising school boards, parents, and students about how to approach a range of academic matters within the local community. You’ll also determine what type of technology works best in different classrooms, discuss curriculum improvements, and help to determine appropriate class sizes based on different grade levels.
Much of this depends on the location where you are and the school district you work in. Most educational consultants receive a master’s degree in education. If you’re interested in this job, it could be worth it to go to graduate school and get your degree, which usually means you’ll receive a higher salary, too.
The average pay for this job is approximately $35 per hour or $73,369 annually with a projected increase to about $81,803 by 2027. If you’re planning an education policy or drafting a new curriculum yourself, then expect your salary to be higher. While much of this job outlook depends on local budgets, the projected growth is expected to be around 6% by the year 2028.
7. Bring Your Training Skills to the Business World as a Corporate Trainer
Teachers have a natural knack for training other people, so why not expand your career horizons as a corporate trainer? This position requires you to work with ownership or management and employees to determine how to improve a company’s performance, which improves its bottom line. You’ll create specific programs that teach skills to employees, and you’ll continually update these programs and practices.
The goal is to help companies scale their performance over time. You will also work closely with managers to determine how to develop a culture that helps them meet their business goals. This career is easy to transition into if you’re just retiring from teaching, especially if you hold a bachelor’s degree in education.
The ability to communicate clearly along with excellent interpersonal skills makes this high-paying job a no-brainer for ex-teachers. The U.S. average salary for this job is $65,000 but may be as high as $73,700 in some markets. Much of this depends on the company you work for and where you live.
A plus of this career choice is that 100% of corporate trainers report that they receive some type of bonus each year. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, this job has a projected growth of 11% by 2023, which is faster than average.
8. Put me in, Coach! Try a Career as an Athletic Coach
There’s no one better to serve as an athletic coach than a retired teacher, especially if you formally taught physical education. Teachers have the ability to motivate people to achieve their goals, and this career can be extremely fulfilling if you enjoy sports and athletics. The type of coaching career you choose depends on the sport, and whether you’re coaching for local colleges or national universities.
Some professional athletic coaches even go on to become coaches of prestigious professional sports teams. The median salary of an athletic coach was about $36,330 in 2020 and 25% of coaches received around $55,530 that year. Your salary will vary depending on who you’re coaching for, how long you’re in the position, and other factors.
Not only is this job extremely fulfilling for many retired teachers, but it’s also a great way to get some exercise. This career has a faster-than-average job outlook with an increase of around 16% in demand by the year 2026.
Whether you’re passionate about history, art, or science, a career as a museum educator (or docent) is an excellent choice if you’re a retired teacher. Many people find this job extremely fulfilling because it gives them a chance to share their excitement and knowledge about specific subjects with others. This job is an especially good fit for former art, history, and science teachers.
As a museum educator, you’ll organize different museum events, activities, and programs. You may also lead volunteers or plan special conferences and excursions for the museum. Some museum educators also offer tours and walk visitors through the museum as they explain the history and background of various exhibits.
This job is a great way to put your leadership skills to work while also doing something you love. Museum educators with a history degree tend to make more money, but it’s not always a requirement. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, many museums throughout the country are now shifting this position to online-only, allowing you to perform your duties virtually.
The salary for this career varies wildly and usually depends on the museum’s annual budget and revenue. On average, museum educators make around $40,000 per year up to $76,500. This unique and fulfilling career has a good outlook with growth projected to be around 9% or higher through 2028.
10. Keep Your Teaching Skills Fresh and Work as a Test Scorer
Many retired teachers take on a career as a professional test scorer. In particular, former English teachers love this job since it gives them a chance to edit papers and provide informative feedback. Many high schools and colleges can benefit from the help of a test scorer since it frees their current teachers up so they can focus on lesson plans and other tasks.
You can even become an independent contractor and score tests remotely for various schools throughout the country. As a test scorer, you’ll need to follow stringent guidelines based on each school’s unique curriculum and rules. However, this job also provides you with opportunities to suggest improvements on how schools present different tests and exams.
In most cases, you’ll be allowed to score tests based on the specific subject that you taught during your teaching career. It’s important to note that most test-scoring jobs are done online and pay by the hour. On average, you can expect to receive $10-$15 per hour, but this rate may be as high as $20 per hour in some cases.
If you’re scoring college-level papers or exams, you’ll likely receive more. This is a great part-time, flexible job for retired teachers who just want to make a little bit of extra money. The outlook for this career varies depending on who you work for and the current demand for new scorers, so look into different sources to find a company that’s currently hiring.
11. Retain Your Love of Learning as a Researcher
The term “researcher” covers a broad range of careers, depending on the employer. If you absolutely love to dig in and research facts, statistics, and other information, then this career could be an excellent fit for you. Look into the fields of math, engineering, and science if you’re interested in transitioning to a career as a professional researcher.
These jobs vary depending on who you work for, and you could become a researcher for everything from the road and transportation industries to scientific companies that focus on medicine and health. Most companies require researchers to have at least a bachelor’s degree in a specific subject, although master’s and doctorate degrees are often preferred and, in some cases, required. If you like, consider getting your master’s degree before looking for a long-term research job.
Entry-level researchers make approximately $46,136 per year, while experienced researchers may make as much as $134,00 per year or even more. The term “researcher” is broad and can cover a wide spectrum of industries. Those in the medical research field have a strong job outlook since there are always new developments within this industry.
People in the field of social science research can expect a job growth outlook of around 2.22% by 2029.