Most college students pick useless majors

Surprising statistics about teachers

Posted on February 19, 2013 4 min read

I heart statistics. I think I got this from my father. He is a banker and was a major in business in University. He loves to share that he only got an "A" in his entire college career and that was in his statistics class.

I recently came across some interesting and bittersweet stats about teachers and pondered them for weeks. I also have heart teachers. I am a teacher and I teach Marketing at Lane Community College. My mother is a retired teacher who still teaches at least one class per semester. She can't manage to walk away from it. These stats I found relate to K-12 teachers, not college teachers, but at least I feel like a distant cousin of the K-12 teacher tribe, hence the obsession.

I know there is a lot of talk about teachers being heroes but being undervalued and underpaid. If this argument is made, it could be further supported by the HUGE amount of personal money teachers spend on their students and classrooms. It is a national tragedy that: firstly, so many school-age children live on such low incomes, and secondly, it becomes a personal burden for teachers to help solve the problem.

  • Teachers spend $ 1.5 billion of their own money on school supplies annually.
  • 91% of teachers buy primary school supplies for their classroom

These numbers may be bigger than you thought, but not entirely shocking. Wait, it gets worse:

  • 67% of teachers buy snacks for their students to help with basic nutrition
  • Every third teacher buys clothing for students, including gloves, hats, shoes, and shoelaces
  • 29% of teachers buy bathroom products for students such as toilet paper and toothbrushes
  • More than half of the teachers paid for excursions for children who could not afford them

Do you have any doubts that teachers are heroes?

So what now? Data is useless unless it can be used.

So what should we do?

  1. When you have a teacher in your life, remember to say thank you. If they didn't have to buy your child or child, you know a toothbrush, so much the better. Say thank you because you probably did it for someone else. Remember her on vacation or next time you are near school.
  2. Support fundraisers for schools. Stop and buy something from the cake sale, or better yet, find the teacher in charge and ask her what you can donate.
  3. Support a teacher-centric nonprofit like SheerID recently added them to a charity we ran as part of the Intix fair. They are nationally recognized and deserve it. DonorChoose does great things.
  4. Since this blog post is on the SheerID website and we are the discount experts, I have to say, offer and promote a teacher discount. If you have a big or small business, offer a teacher discount and call him from the rooftops. SheerID can guarantee that only teachers will receive your special offer.

Sometimes something is said so often and so loudly that it becomes a cliché. Teachers who are undervalued can be one of those feelings right now. Given the high level of unemployment and the fact that more and more people feel underemployed, the plight of teachers cannot currently be viewed as such a "plight".

When teachers are looking for a new marketer I would take the job and start with the stats listed above. Not only are they shaping our children and our future, but they are doing far more than any job description could ever ask - they keep children warm and full and give them a pencil and paper to write on. What teachers do every day can, without exaggeration, be compared to volunteers helping the victims of Hurricane Sandy. But instead of a big, noisy television effort, they just step in to help out a little each day of their work. Every day you step on the front lines of silent disaster and support the children who are hardest hit by it. That deserves a "thank you".

by Marci Hansen