Literacy teachers work with adult students who are often working toward earning their GEDs. They often work part-time in government funded programs, and their jobs are often affected by changes in funding. They may or may not be licensed teachers, and their pay is often lower than licensed public school teachers.
Literacy teachers often work with students from many cultures. They may have students who have had some primary education and other students who are literate in their own language. The latter students may be simultaneously learning to speak English. Some students may be as young as 16 or 17 years old, and others may be grandparents. These students often have families and jobs as well, which makes the needs and concerns of these students very different from those of children. Literacy teachers often are employed in adult basic education programs in school districts or nonprofit programs. They often work part time, and they generally do not receive benefits. They usually have at least a bachelor’s degree, and many have state teaching licenses and education in teaching adults.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, literacy teachers earn a mean annual wage of $50,390 or $24.23 per hour. Those earning in the 10th percentile earn $26,510 per year, or $12.75 per hour. Those earning in the 25th percentile earn $34,720 per year, or $16.69 per hour. Those earning in the 75th percentile earn $62,970, or $30.27 per hour. Literacy teachers earning in the 90th percentile make $83,120, or $39.96 per hour.
The highest concentration of literacy teachers is in Washington State, but the highest-paying state for literacy teachers is California, where the average salary is $70,410 per year, or $33.85 per hour. Oregon pays the next highest salary at $66,660 per year, or $32.05 per hour. Those in New Jersey earn an average annual salary of $60,200, or $28.94 per hour. New York literacy teachers earn about $1,000 less per year at $59,350, or $28.54 per hour. Wisconsin is the fifth-highest paying state for literacy teachers at $59,200, or $28.46 per hour.
The highest-paying metropolitan area for literacy teachers is Fresno, California, where the annual average salary is $84,070, or $40.42 per hour. The next highest-paying metro area is also in California. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, California, literacy teachers earn $78,640 per year on average, or $37.81 per hour. Those in Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton in Oregon and Washington earn $76,570, or $36.90 per hour. Haverhill-North Andover-Amesbury, Maine-New Hampshire, literacy teachers earn $75,690, or $36.39 per hour. The fifth-highest paying metro area is Stockton, California, where the average annual salary is $75,520, or $36.31 per hour.