Currently, I work for the public school system as a special education math teacher. This review is a reflection of the school system itself, not the school where I am currently employed.
The majority of the students are a pleasure to teach. It has its challenges, as all careers. The time off for the holidays and summer allows a parent to spend the extra time desired with the family. The school where I am currently teaching has some of the best administrative leadership. The teachers at this school are all talented and exceptional professionals. The faculty and administration has the children's best interest in mind.
The amount of administrative work exceeds what is possible in a work day. We have 45 minutes of planning time to work on grades, curriculum, lesson planning, additional paper work from administration and the county, etc. The remaining time is consumed by duties, meetings, and teaching. Therefore, staying multiple hours after school, coming in early before school, working at home late into the evening, and often working hours over the weekend is often necessary to avoid falling overwhelmingly behind.
The salary does not equate to the amount of work required to keep up. Summers are wonderful to have off, but you must either find a summer job or have enough money taken out of each paycheck throughout the school year to pay the summer bills. As a single mother or father, the salary is financially stressful.
I feel a teacher's salary is insulting for the amount of work required and the amount of hours worked off the clock. The amount of time worked off the clock would more than likely equate to the two months of the year unpaid. I am currently searching for a career that is both financially and intellectually rewarding.