what is a secondary school teacher?

As a secondary teacher, you teach students diverse subjects. Your students are mostly children and teenagers between 11 and 16 years old. You support their personal development by building a good learning culture. Your role involves planning lessons, teaching, assessing learning in line with curriculum objectives, and recording students' progress.

As a secondary teacher, you influence students' personal and social development. You monitor and observe students' progress or changes in their behaviour to provide or offer appropriate support.

As a secondary school teacher, you teach maths, social science, English, arts and science. You are conversant with proven teaching methods for the subjects. You should also be familiar with the content necessary for passing secondary school exams on your subjects. It is essential to stay updated on the developments in your subject area. If the subject has new national objectives, methods or resources, you stay updated on those changes.

The role also involves liaising with parents, carers and professionals, both formally and informally. You attend meetings with parents and help them support their children through school. You also participate in extracurricular activities in school to improve learning outcomes.

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average secondary school teacher salary

According to Payscale, the average take-home salary of a secondary school teacher is ₹346,715 per year. An early career in secondary school teaching attracts a salary of ₹126,000 per year. With experience, your earnings increase gradually, and you can earn over ₹723,000 annually.

what factors affect the salary of a secondary school teacher?

As a secondary school teacher, your earnings fluctuate based on experience and educational qualifications. Teachers with postgraduate qualifications earn more than those with only a bachelor's degree. When you have one year of experience in secondary school teaching, your salary is lower than a teacher with over five years of experience. As you improve your experience, your earnings increase gradually.

Your employer also influences your earnings. Working in government schools may attract lower salaries. Private schools pay better salaries since they have more resources and expect a higher level of performance.

Your location also affects your salary scale. For instance, secondary school teachers in New Delhi, Delhi, Mumbai, Maharashtra and Bangalore earn more than teachers in other regions. Locations with the lowest salaries include Guwahati, Assam and Kolkata, West Bengal. Working in metropolitan areas also increases your compensation package due to the high demand for the role.

Man and woman having a laugh during a meeting in a meeting room.
Man and woman having a laugh during a meeting in a meeting room.

types of secondary school teachers

Secondary teachers are classified based on the subjects they teach. Some of them include:

  • secondary English teachers: as a secondary school English teacher, you help students grasp a good command of spoken and written English. You prepare students for secondary school exams by teaching them how to read and analyse literature.
  • secondary science teachers: as a secondary science teacher, you impart knowledge to students of various scientific disciplines. You guide students through experiments in various disciplines, such as chemistry and biology.
  • secondary maths teachers: as a secondary school maths teacher, you educate students on general and advanced maths topics. Your job involves planning mathematics learning activities and recording student progress.

working as a secondary school teacher

Working as a secondary teacher involves imparting knowledge to students to prepare them for secondary school certification and other specialised exams. You also mentor and prepare them for their future careers. Let's explore the specific tasks and duties of a secondary school teacher.


education and skills

If you want to become a secondary school teacher in India, start by completing 12th in any stream. You can enrol for a bachelor of education or a bachelor of arts (BA) combined into the B.ED integrated programme. The minimum entry requirement for bachelor’s degree courses is 50% in 10+2, and you must pass the required entrance exams to join undergraduate programmes. To join a course for secondary teachers, take the Central Teacher Eligibility Test (CTET) held for schools under the control of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). The State Teacher Eligibility Test (STET) is for candidates who want to teach grades 9 to 12.

When you complete the bachelor of education course, you can progress to postgraduate studies. Pursue a master of education or master of arts in education to advance your skills and qualifications.

secondary school teacher skills and competencies

The following qualities and characteristics are crucial for secondary teachers:

  • communication skills: as a secondary school teacher, communication skills are vital for your career. You explain concepts and relay information to your students. Good communication skills allow you to establish classroom expectations, understand student goals and preferences, and deliver effective lessons.
  • expertise in a specific subject: you need expertise in teaching a particular subject. For instance, if you teach maths, you require specific teaching skills. You should be familiar with teaching methodologies to impart knowledge to students and help them excel in your subject.
  • mentorship: secondary teachers don't just teach students; they mentor them to become successful adults. Mentorship skills help you guide students and encourage them to pursue their goals. You should know your students personally, understand their interests or passions and help them achieve their ambitions.
  • empathy: as a secondary school teacher, it is important to empathise with your students' situations. When you are empathetic, you understand the needs of your students. If a student is struggling with coursework, you help them overcome their challenges.
  • patience: sometimes, students have difficulty understanding new concepts. You need the patience to explain the same concept multiple times and help them understand at their own pace. Patience also helps you build confidence in your skills and abilities.

FAQs about working as a secondary school teacher

Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of a secondary school teacher.

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