Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

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protagonist
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Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am

My daughter just got an M. Ed. in Biology and has had numerous desirable job offers.
The job she is most interested in is only offering her an 80% teaching (and salary) position for the first year (teaching HS biology).
Starting salaries at the other schools are about $50K. She would make $40K year one and have an 80% teaching load. She would receive full benefits and the year would count as a full year toward her pension. As a full-time position the salary is competitive- she would make $52K second year if re-hired and ultimately $95K at top pay scale.
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
She is willing to take the risk, and has made it clear that if she does not get offered a full-time position year 2 she would leave. She does not seem to have a hard time finding work and is prepared to move if necessary. I do feel like she knows what she is doing.

My question for teachers and people in the education field: What is your experience with this kind of offer? Do such offers usually become full-time after a year if the teacher performs well? Do you think she is making a mistake?

I'm not asking because I think so, or because I am trying to micro-manage her life. She is very responsible making her own decisions. I am just seeking information.

Thanks.
Last edited by protagonist on Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

oldfatguy
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by oldfatguy » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:25 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am

It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
Even if there isn't new money to make this position 100%, there will be other openings in the district as other teachers leave/retire. If it is in a place she wants to live and work, I'd take the job.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by smitcat » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:28 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
My daughter just got an M. Ed. in Biology and has had numerous desirable job offers.
The job she is most interested in is only offering her an 80% teaching (and salary) position for the first year (teaching HS biology).
Starting salaries at the other schools are $50K. She would make $40K year one and have an 80% teaching load. She would receive full benefits and the year would count as a full year toward her pension. As a full-time position the salary is competitive- she would make $52K second year if re-hired and ultimately $95K at top pay scale.
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
She is willing to take the risk, and has made it clear that if she does not get offered a full-time position year 2 she would leave. She does not seem to have a hard time finding work and is prepared to move if necessary. I do feel like she knows what she is doing.

My question for teachers and people in the education field: What is your experience with this kind of offer? Do such offers usually become full-time after a year if the teacher performs well? Do you think she is making a mistake?

I'm not asking because I think so, or because I am trying to micro-manage her life. She is very responsible making her own decisions. I am just seeking information.

Thanks.
We are not teachers - but we know dozens of new term teachers ….
In NY where we are the chances of being picked up full time the second year are about 50/50 lately.
They were much better about 5-6 years back - changes are constant. I am sure it varies dramatically by state , area, and even school district so any replies may be very misleading.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by fortfun » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:31 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
My daughter just got an M. Ed. in Biology and has had numerous desirable job offers.
The job she is most interested in is only offering her an 80% teaching (and salary) position for the first year (teaching HS biology).
Starting salaries at the other schools are $50K. She would make $40K year one and have an 80% teaching load. She would receive full benefits and the year would count as a full year toward her pension. As a full-time position the salary is competitive- she would make $52K second year if re-hired and ultimately $95K at top pay scale.
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
She is willing to take the risk, and has made it clear that if she does not get offered a full-time position year 2 she would leave. She does not seem to have a hard time finding work and is prepared to move if necessary. I do feel like she knows what she is doing.

My question for teachers and people in the education field: What is your experience with this kind of offer? Do such offers usually become full-time after a year if the teacher performs well? Do you think she is making a mistake?

I'm not asking because I think so, or because I am trying to micro-manage her life. She is very responsible making her own decisions. I am just seeking information.

Thanks.
25 year teacher here. I think she should go for it. She can probably pick up "in building" sub jobs to help make up the difference. If she isn't picked up by that school, there's an excellent chance that she'll get picked up by a nearby school. In science, I see that all the time in my very popular school district. Good luck to her!

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by funktor » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:32 am

My partner accepted a similar 90% position. After performing exceptionally well that year, a return offer for full time teaching for the following school year was given.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by donaldfair71 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:35 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
My daughter just got an M. Ed. in Biology and has had numerous desirable job offers.
The job she is most interested in is only offering her an 80% teaching (and salary) position for the first year (teaching HS biology).
Starting salaries at the other schools are $50K. She would make $40K year one and have an 80% teaching load. She would receive full benefits and the year would count as a full year toward her pension. As a full-time position the salary is competitive- she would make $52K second year if re-hired and ultimately $95K at top pay scale.
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
She is willing to take the risk, and has made it clear that if she does not get offered a full-time position year 2 she would leave. She does not seem to have a hard time finding work and is prepared to move if necessary. I do feel like she knows what she is doing.

My question for teachers and people in the education field: What is your experience with this kind of offer? Do such offers usually become full-time after a year if the teacher performs well? Do you think she is making a mistake?

I'm not asking because I think so, or because I am trying to micro-manage her life. She is very responsible making her own decisions. I am just seeking information.

Thanks.
Teacher here.

Feels like her heart is in the 80% position, and she can make due with it financially. I see no reason to not take it. The only downside would be if those full-time options are not there next year, but if she's at 80% and does a good job/gets positive reviews, I don't see how it would be an issue getting those spots down the road. Plus, she is willing to move.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:36 am

Thanks for the input....you are all telling me effectively what she is also saying. It's nice hearing it from others with experience.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:39 am

Another experienced teacher here. I would agree with taking the position assuming the demographics in the district are good. In my district, we have declining enrollment and the people hired for partial positions never get picked up for a full-time job. Many of them are great teachers, it's just that we don't have enough students.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Clark & Addison » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am

I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:26 am

Clark & Addison wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am
I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.
I believe one downside of an 80% position is that it does not count towards tenure.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by ohai » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:31 am

What other job offers is she considering?

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BL
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by BL » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:41 am

It sounds good to me.

Meanwhile, she could look around and see if there is another needed subject she could easily get minimally qualified for if that would help with future full time teaching, such as chemistry, math, science, etc. She may also be qualified for college level teaching.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by donaldfair71 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:44 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:26 am
Clark & Addison wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am
I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.
I believe one downside of an 80% position is that it does not count towards tenure.
What state?

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Tdubs » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:51 am

Her instincts are right. Take it.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by dm200 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:09 pm

No expert or experience here -- but I would take the job. Sounds like what she wants, as well as getting full benefits.

I also wonder if there is any possibility that the additional 20% might open up during the school year?

I suggest, if not already done so, make sure the employer knows her complete capability of teaching other classes.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Watty » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:34 pm

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there.
Not a teacher but I know someone that just started teaching through my adult son.

She started out in a not so good school because that was the only job offer she could get since she had been teaching English overseas for a few years and was not able to apply for jobs as well.

There were lots of discipline problems and lack of backup from the administration so she hated it.

The next year she was able to get a job in a good school district and loves it and plans on working there for the foreseeable future. Your daughters choice sounds reasonable to me.

One thing to look at though is that since she is not working full time she can likely find some side job that she may also be able to work at in the summers and during school breaks.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Socrates » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:39 pm

been in education since 1992.....
I started as an 80%. It is very easy to move into 100% position. It may not happen year 2, but it is likely. There appears to be know budget cut on the near horizon either. She can also pick up other assignments as needed which may be stipend based.

I would do it as she seems passionate and it really makes the job if you are working in a district that is strong, and has things like positive parent involvement, etc.

My only question, which is no big deal, but pensions such as CalSTRS, would only count that at .8 and not a full year unless she paid the 20%.
That is California though, and again, not a big deal as she is just starting out.
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by dm200 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:39 pm

One thing to look at though is that since she is not working full time she can likely find some side job that she may also be able to work at in the summers and during school breaks.
Just a guess, but I would assume that "80%" means that instead of teaching five classes a day (100%), she is teaching four (80%). She may not, then, have an actual shorter duration work day.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:18 pm

ohai wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:31 am
What other job offers is she considering?
She has 4 other offers that are all full-time, but the one she wants most is the school that is only offering 80%.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:19 pm

duplicate post...sorry
Last edited by protagonist on Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Goal33 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:24 pm

I think she should go for it but just an FYI in case it's not obvious. She might be an 80% teacher but you can count on her working more than 80% of a regular staff member.
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by dm200 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:28 pm

Goal33 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:24 pm
I think she should go for it but just an FYI in case it's not obvious. She might be an 80% teacher but you can count on her working more than 80% of a regular staff member.
Yes - I suspect that is probably true.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:30 pm

donaldfair71 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:44 am
protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:26 am
Clark & Addison wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am
I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.
I believe one downside of an 80% position is that it does not count towards tenure.
What state?
This position is in Maine- upper middle class suburb of Portland. From everything I have read it is rated between first and third of 120 districts in the state. Student reviews also seem to be overwhelmingly positive (and you know how hard HS students can be if they are unhappy!)

The other positions she was considering are all in MA, where her mother and I live. I was hoping she would take a MA job (MA is known for being one of the top states in the US for teaching and...my selfish reason.... she would be closer to home). But she really seems to have fallen in love with the school in Maine...plus she knows the area well (she has friends in Portland she often visits) and she really likes it. She has also lived around here for almost all of her long 29 years, and she likes the idea of trying something different.

One thing she likes about ME vs MA is they don't have mandatory state testing of students (MCAS in MA). Places that do are often evaluated on the basis of student performance on such tests, and thus make the teachers "teach to the test", offering much less flexibility in teaching. My daughter is particularly creative and she gets the feeling that the ME school will offer her more room to teach the way she wants.

That said, she has an open mind about this, plus she is single with no kids, and she said that if they don't offer her a full time position next year or if she is unhappy at the school she will move and probably will have no trouble finding another job. MA and ME (according to her) have reciprocity, so she wouldn't lose credit for her year of teaching in the hierarchy if she returns to MA.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:45 pm

Watty wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:34 pm
protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there.


One thing to look at though is that since she is not working full time she can likely find some side job that she may also be able to work at in the summers and during school breaks.
A caveat there is an arcane rule affecting a minority of states, including ME (but apparently also MA), called the "Windfall Elimination Provision". It would significantly limit the amount of SS benefits she would receive if she gets a teacher's pension. https://socialsecurityintelligence.com/ ... -security/

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:53 pm

dm200 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:28 pm
Goal33 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:24 pm
I think she should go for it but just an FYI in case it's not obvious. She might be an 80% teacher but you can count on her working more than 80% of a regular staff member.
Yes - I suspect that is probably true.
Me too.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Watty » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:01 pm

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:30 pm
This position is in Maine- upper middle class suburb of Portland.
Depending on where you live in Massachusetts the housing in Portland Maine could also be a lot less expensive so that could also be a factor for the long term.

My impression is that in many areas of Massachusetts a single teacher would have a hard time being able to afford even a small condo much less a single family home.

My situation was a lot different but years ago when I was ready to buy my first house I moved to a much less expensive area that had a better quality of life and that worked out very well for me and in retrospect was one of the things that allowed me to retire when I was in my 50's.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by hansmatt » Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:15 pm

I'm very similar in background...BS in Bio, Masters in Ed. Took part time (I think .6FTE) position immediately after Masters at a top public school. Now at year 24, in 3 different states. Still love my job, but get to teach what I want (AP Bio, Chem) and have a good department/school climate.
Getting into a good school is key. In every position I've been in there have been many interested candidates, but rarely a position open. If you have a shot...I'd take it! High academic performance, good teaching and community culture, and pay are all key to long term success in teaching.
The salary looks strong, compared to my own school, and more importantly she will get credit for her year of service. 50k at .8 is 20% higher than a 1.0FTE starting salary in my state schools, same with far end of the scale. Also consider availability and interest in coaching/extra curricular activities. They can be substantial income, but also can be a huge impact on time. Many school expect or even "require" you do do something additional...be sure it interests you as those positions are sometimes hard to give away when you tire of them or need something with less of a time demand.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by fru-gal » Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:23 pm

I would always vote for a job one loves over money. However, I would nail down exactly what this means in terms of tenure and the windfall provision mentioned above, as well as other benefits like medical insurance, just so there are no surprises.

What happens to the pension credit if she changes schools, including to another state?

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by alpenglow » Thu Jun 06, 2019 6:33 pm

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:30 pm
donaldfair71 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:44 am
protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:26 am
Clark & Addison wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am
I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.
I believe one downside of an 80% position is that it does not count towards tenure.
What state?
This position is in Maine- upper middle class suburb of Portland. From everything I have read it is rated between first and third of 120 districts in the state. Student reviews also seem to be overwhelmingly positive (and you know how hard HS students can be if they are unhappy!)

The other positions she was considering are all in MA, where her mother and I live. I was hoping she would take a MA job (MA is known for being one of the top states in the US for teaching and...my selfish reason.... she would be closer to home). But she really seems to have fallen in love with the school in Maine...plus she knows the area well (she has friends in Portland she often visits) and she really likes it. She has also lived around here for almost all of her long 29 years, and she likes the idea of trying something different.

One thing she likes about ME vs MA is they don't have mandatory state testing of students (MCAS in MA). Places that do are often evaluated on the basis of student performance on such tests, and thus make the teachers "teach to the test", offering much less flexibility in teaching. My daughter is particularly creative and she gets the feeling that the ME school will offer her more room to teach the way she wants.

That said, she has an open mind about this, plus she is single with no kids, and she said that if they don't offer her a full time position next year or if she is unhappy at the school she will move and probably will have no trouble finding another job. MA and ME (according to her) have reciprocity, so she wouldn't lose credit for her year of teaching in the hierarchy if she returns to MA.
Portland is a great little city and I'm pretty sure I know the district in question. Great area. As far as I know, demographic growth is good there. I'd go for it. She might also pick up extra pay doing a club, coaching, or even covering extra classes as a sub. The fractional people I know do a lot of that in my district. Best of luck to her.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by fsrph » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:24 pm

I am not a teacher. But, getting her foot in the door in a place she wants to be seems like the right thing to do. Vacancies come up in schools through retirement all the time. I'd take that job in a heartbeat.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by unstartable » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:34 pm

I am a teacher, I would take this 80% position, it probably isn't any more or less likely to become full time for year two than another first year position is to continue into year two. Unfortunately, needs change and it's pretty easy for a first year teacher to get laid off. Can she get certified in chemistry?

In my district there is often part time tutoring available at a descent rate. Lots of summer programs hire teachers as well.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by LadyGeek » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:44 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (career guidance).
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:43 pm

hansmatt wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:15 pm
I'm very similar in background...BS in Bio, Masters in Ed. Took part time (I think .6FTE) position immediately after Masters at a top public school. Now at year 24, in 3 different states. Still love my job, but get to teach what I want (AP Bio, Chem) and have a good department/school climate.
Getting into a good school is key. In every position I've been in there have been many interested candidates, but rarely a position open. If you have a shot...I'd take it! High academic performance, good teaching and community culture, and pay are all key to long term success in teaching.
The salary looks strong, compared to my own school, and more importantly she will get credit for her year of service. 50k at .8 is 20% higher than a 1.0FTE starting salary in my state schools, same with far end of the scale. Also consider availability and interest in coaching/extra curricular activities. They can be substantial income, but also can be a huge impact on time. Many school expect or even "require" you do do something additional...be sure it interests you as those positions are sometimes hard to give away when you tire of them or need something with less of a time demand.
Very helpful, thanks!

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protagonist
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:45 pm

fru-gal wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:23 pm
I would always vote for a job one loves over money. However, I would nail down exactly what this means in terms of tenure and the windfall provision mentioned above, as well as other benefits like medical insurance, just so there are no surprises.

What happens to the pension credit if she changes schools, including to another state?
According to her, if she chooses a state with reciprocity (such as if she returns to MA), she will get 100% pension credit for the year.

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protagonist
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:52 pm

unstartable wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:34 pm
I am a teacher, I would take this 80% position, it probably isn't any more or less likely to become full time for year two than another first year position is to continue into year two. Unfortunately, needs change and it's pretty easy for a first year teacher to get laid off. Can she get certified in chemistry?

In my district there is often part time tutoring available at a descent rate. Lots of summer programs hire teachers as well.

Yes, she can take the exam and get certified in Chemistry. She is considering doing so....she certainly would if they hired her full time contingent on her teaching chemistry.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by MNGopher » Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:59 pm

Starting the pension clock as soon as possible can be a big deal. In my case, substitute teaching for just a few weeks at the end of a school year allowed me qualify for much better pension payouts. Someone who started teaching just a few months after me has to work 5 more years to get the same pension amount.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by unstartable » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:07 pm

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:52 pm
unstartable wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:34 pm
I am a teacher, I would take this 80% position, it probably isn't any more or less likely to become full time for year two than another first year position is to continue into year two. Unfortunately, needs change and it's pretty easy for a first year teacher to get laid off. Can she get certified in chemistry?

In my district there is often part time tutoring available at a descent rate. Lots of summer programs hire teachers as well.

Yes, she can take the exam and get certified in Chemistry. She is considering doing so....she certainly would if they hired her full time contingent on her teaching chemistry.
In my district having more than one certification is a big deal. Almost all new hires in science have more than one. It also makes a new teacher more likely to be retained. Next year they might need 80% biology and someone to pickup a chemistry class at 20%.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by bayview » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:34 pm

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 8:52 pm
unstartable wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:34 pm
I am a teacher, I would take this 80% position, it probably isn't any more or less likely to become full time for year two than another first year position is to continue into year two. Unfortunately, needs change and it's pretty easy for a first year teacher to get laid off. Can she get certified in chemistry?

In my district there is often part time tutoring available at a descent rate. Lots of summer programs hire teachers as well.
Yes, she can take the exam and get certified in Chemistry. She is considering doing so....she certainly would if they hired her full time contingent on her teaching chemistry.
I would certainly recommend that she do this now and not wait until a possible job offer.
The continuous execution of a sound strategy gives you the benefit of the strategy. That's what it's all about. --Rick Ferri

nodak
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by nodak » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 pm

Take the position, especially if she is that excited to be living in the area. Getting your foot in the door can be the hardest part of starting out teaching, especially in a populated area that pays well and has good schools. If she is that excited about living in that community, it is likely there are many others that applied and feel that way as well.

Schools like continuity with staff and unless a major issue occurs, or they need to make cuts, she could very well end up there for a long time. I know my school was in the process of having a lot of 30-35 veterans retire when I started, and many of them taught their entire careers there.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by nodak » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:23 pm

Yes, she can take the exam and get certified in Chemistry. She is considering doing so....she certainly would if they hired her full time contingent on her teaching chemistry.
I agree with bayview, she makes herself more valuable by being able to teach different subjects. Do it now and the school will already be aware of it and instead of having to advertise for a Chemistry position down the road, they can just offer her a full contract.

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Harry Livermore
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Harry Livermore » Fri Jun 07, 2019 6:33 am

Wife is a teacher.
If it's a good district, and if Maine's teachers' pension is relatively well-funded, I would suggest she take it. As others have said, other teachers will retire or leave the district and the 80% position will become 100%.
My wife has been in the same high-performing district for over 20 years. RARELY is there any kind of discipline issue, the kids are all college bound and highly motivated learners, and most households are supportive and involved in the school. Many are 2-parent, stable, long-term residents. If your daughter is "buying in" to a similar district, that is solid gold. And I mean that from a quality of life perspective, not financial (although generally, high performing districts also pay better) To be able to teach kids who are serious and excited about learning is a gift.
You are correct about the WEP. That's why I mentioned the pension. If Maine's pension is well-funded, and the politicians are living up their end of the contract and paying in to the system, then great. If they are abdicating their responsibility and the pension is in trouble, she could be in financial trouble 40 years from now. She should look into that.
Cheers

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by jpelder » Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:23 am

I agree with everybody: she should take it. A position at a good school with a good admin is more precious than gold. And science teachers are always in demand (especially if she can teach more than just Biology), so she can apply elsewhere with a good chance of hire if 80% doesn't turn into 100%

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by donaldfair71 » Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:42 am

donaldfair71 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:44 am
protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:26 am
Clark & Addison wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:41 am
I teach and we have some 80% positions in our corporation. They don't become 100% positions because in our small school the need is not there. I have no idea what it is like where your daughter would teach, but I'd say give it a shot if that's the school she wants to be in. With her degree she should be able to find jobs elsewhere whenever she wants if this one doesn't turn into 100% like she wants.

On a side note I have a sister in law that is in one of our 80% positions and loves it.. It gives her more time with her kids and allows her to attend events at her kids school that she wouldn't be able to if she was 100%. She is fine with the 80% pay.
I believe one downside of an 80% position is that it does not count towards tenure.
What state?
Kind of think the Maine school has to be the choice.

Someone had asked about tenure, and that is kind of hit and miss by state. For example, if she was weighing Mass vs Virginia, or another Right to Work state, that status could be a tipping point. But Maine vs Mass isn't gonna hold a whole lot of difference as far as tenure status, union membership, district size, etc.

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protagonist
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:02 am

nodak wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:23 pm
Yes, she can take the exam and get certified in Chemistry. She is considering doing so....she certainly would if they hired her full time contingent on her teaching chemistry.
I agree with bayview, she makes herself more valuable by being able to teach different subjects. Do it now and the school will already be aware of it and instead of having to advertise for a Chemistry position down the road, they can just offer her a full contract.
I mentioned this to her.
She told me she plans to take the Chemistry certification exam next summer.
It has been awhile since she took any Chemistry courses, and she needs time to study for the test.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Old Guy » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:11 am

Both my wife and I are covered by WEP because of our federal employment. However, my wife worked enough time in SS covered positions so that she is eligible for her full SS payments. With summer jobs covered by SS over the years, your daughter might likewise become eligible for her full SS.

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protagonist
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by protagonist » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:20 am

Harry Livermore wrote:
Fri Jun 07, 2019 6:33 am

You are correct about the WEP. That's why I mentioned the pension. If Maine's pension is well-funded, and the politicians are living up their end of the contract and paying in to the system, then great. If they are abdicating their responsibility and the pension is in trouble, she could be in financial trouble 40 years from now. She should look into that.
Cheers
I just googled that and it looks bleak. Maine's pension plan for teachers received a grade of "F" for providing adequate retirement benefits for teachers and an "F" for financial sustainability.

That said, my state of Massachusetts, which tends to rank among the top three states in the US on lists of best states for teachers, also received an "F" on both parameters. New York, also ranked highly for teaching, received a "D" and an "F", and was the only state in the region that received any grade above an "F" (including all New England states, NY, NJ, and PA). And many of them are WEP states. A pension grade of "F" seems to be the rule rather than the exception , not only in the northeast but all across the country. There are very few good options. https://www.teacherpensions.org/states
Last edited by protagonist on Fri Jun 07, 2019 9:15 am, edited 3 times in total.

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dm200
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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by dm200 » Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:44 am

Old Guy wrote:
Fri Jun 07, 2019 8:11 am
Both my wife and I are covered by WEP because of our federal employment. However, my wife worked enough time in SS covered positions so that she is eligible for her full SS payments. With summer jobs covered by SS over the years, your daughter might likewise become eligible for her full SS.
It is not clear (maybe I missed it) whether she would or would not be participating in SS.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by 3funder » Fri Jun 07, 2019 9:23 am

In my district, if you do a good job, the principal is likely to invite you back and offer you a 100% position as long as the staffing allocation exists; one could also obtain a 100% position at another school within the system, as needed.

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by Apostrophe » Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:24 am

I have been in high school education for more than twenty years. My suggestion would be for her to take this position, since it is one of the best ways to get hired full time and it's with her desired school.

Two observations (based solely on my experience, in my district/state; YMMV):

1. New teachers are obviously observed closely during their first year, however, part time new teachers are sometimes scrutinized even more carefully than full time new teachers, since we know we'll want to consider increasing them to full time the following year, if an opportunity becomes available. Think of it almost as an ongoing, daily job interview. It can be more pressure than usual, but will pay off in the long run if she does a great job. One year we had a fantastic part time English teacher and when it came to creating our master schedule the following spring, we did everything possible to create and secure a full time spot for her. In a different year, we had only a so-so part time math teacher; we did not work hard to keep him (and certainly not to increase him to full time) and he chose to leave for a full time job elsewhere (which was fine with us). From your description it sounds like she's smart and hardworking, so she should be a good candidate for this opportunity.

2. At our school, full time teachers are expected to be available to work with students for a 20-minute period before AND after school each day. Part time teachers aren't required to be available for one of the sessions (either the a.m. or p.m. help time, depending on whether they are working the first five periods or the last five periods of the day). This can be a problem for some students and parents, and can lead to complaints that the teacher isn't accessible. (Just because the teacher isn't required to be there doesn't mean the students and parents understand and accept it!) So our best part time teachers---especially the ones who are hoping to become full time---strive for excellent communication with their students and parents and do whatever they can to assure the students have access to them for help. What that looks like obviously varies considerably from situation to situation, but it's just something to think about.

Best wishes to your daughter!

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Re: Attn: teachers....Daughter considering 80% teaching position. Good idea?

Post by masonstone » Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:31 am

protagonist wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:21 am
My daughter just got an M. Ed. in Biology and has had numerous desirable job offers.
The job she is most interested in is only offering her an 80% teaching (and salary) position for the first year (teaching HS biology).
Starting salaries at the other schools are about $50K. She would make $40K year one and have an 80% teaching load. She would receive full benefits and the year would count as a full year toward her pension. As a full-time position the salary is competitive- she would make $52K second year if re-hired and ultimately $95K at top pay scale.
It's an excellent school district...rated top three in the state....student reviews are excellent....and for many reasons she wants to live and teach there. She is convinced via interviews that she would probably be offered a full-time position after the first year, but for this year the school only has the budget for an 80% position.
She is willing to take the risk, and has made it clear that if she does not get offered a full-time position year 2 she would leave. She does not seem to have a hard time finding work and is prepared to move if necessary. I do feel like she knows what she is doing.

My question for teachers and people in the education field: What is your experience with this kind of offer? Do such offers usually become full-time after a year if the teacher performs well? Do you think she is making a mistake?

I'm not asking because I think so, or because I am trying to micro-manage her life. She is very responsible making her own decisions. I am just seeking information.

Thanks.
It's sad how low we pay our teachers.

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