The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not supply data specific to high school lab technicians. However, the bureau does supply information on related fields. As of 2010, the BLS reports that secondary school teachers enjoy an average annual salary of $55,990. Lab technicians in these schools may or may not be licensed educators. If they are not, it may be more suitable to compare them to science technicians of various fields. Biological technicians, for instance, enjoy an average annual wage of $41,740 as of 2010. According to 2010 information on chemical technicians, they earn an average annual salary of $44,200 nationwide.
The sciences are key to fulfilling a well rounded course of study for a secondary-level student, as they teach young people to think critically and logically and utilize their knowledge of abstract concepts to analyze and improve the world. For this reason, some secondary schools have highly developed science programs, which provide students with laboratories in which they can use scientific equipment and perform experiments. Lab technicians facilitate learning in these environments by maintaining critical lab equipment.
Average Annual Wage
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the states that pay secondary school teachers the most are, in order, California, Texas, New York, Illinois and Pennsylvania. The states that pay biological technicians the most are California, Massachusetts, New York, Washington and Texas. The states that pay chemical technicians the most are California, Texas, New York, New Jersey and Ohio.
Job availability according to specialization may vary from one area to another. One school district may want a lab technician with more knowledge of chemistry, while another may want a technician with more knowledge of biology or some other field of science. Because most school districts teach various branches of science, though, lab technicians with a background in multiple fields are more marketable than those with one specialization.
Many positions for high school lab technicians may require a state teaching license. Even if such a license is not required for a particular position, at least a bachelor's degree may be necessary. This bachelor's degree should be in some field of science that would apply to what goes on inside a school's laboratory.