Early Childhood Education Jobs in Florida

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Florida has long understood that a state’s K-12 educational system is only as good as its early childhood education system, which is why it was one of the first in the nation to offer free pre-k to all four-year-olds, regardless of income.

Florida’s commitment to the state’s youngest learners—the Voluntary Pre-K Education Program (VPK) —includes offering parents the choice of different educational settings and programs, including private childcare, public schools, and specialized instruction providers. VPK is undoubtedly a success – about 80% of all four-year-olds in Florida attend VPK.

VPK is just one example of the outstanding opportunities available to early childhood educators in Florida and why pursuing a career in ECE here can lead to exciting opportunities for you.

Florida Salary Rankings

#26

in the US for Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare

#27

in the US for Special Education Teachers, Preschool

#26

in the US for Childcare Workers

#47

in the US for Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education

#39

in the US for Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education

#20

in the US for Special Education Teachers, Kindergarten and Elementary School

Early Childhood Jobs in Florida

In Florida’s largest metropolitan regions, jobs within the sphere of early childhood education pay salaries that beat out the national average.

Occupation Total Employed Median Annual Salary % of US Median
Childcare Workers 30,070 $23,590 eks97%
Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education 25,940 $27,990 eks81%
Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education 10,680 $50,400 eks86%
Special Education Teachers, Kindergarten and Elementary School 5,020 $60,720 eks96%
Child, Family, and School Social Workers 9,010 $42,640 eks86%
Special Education Teachers, Preschool 1,230 $50,120 eks81%
Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare 1,700 $48,370 eks90%
eks = Salary below nat’l. avg.     check = Salary above nat’l. avg.

At the same time, Florida is also home to some of the highest numbers of teachers and administrators in the nation, perhaps not surprising considering the number of school districts throughout the state. Florida ranks fourth nationally in terms of the number of childcare workers, preschool teachers, and special education teachers working in ECE settings.

Childcare Workers – There are 30,070 childcare workers employed in Florida earning an average of $23,590, which is on par with the national average. Jobs among Florida’s childcare workers are expected to increase by 15.6 % through 2026 – that’s more than double the projected national growth rate of 7% for this profession.

Child, Family, and School Social Workers – Florida’s 9,010 child, family, and school social workers earn an annual average salary of $42,640. Jobs for these professionals are projected to increase by 22.9% through 2026, which is much higher than the projected national growth rate of 16%.

Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education – There are 10,680 kindergarten teachers working in Florida, earning $50,400 on average each year. Employment among Florida’s kindergarten teachers is expected to increase by 13.6% through 2026, or nearly double the projected national growth rate of 7% for this occupation.

Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education – The Sunshine State’s 25,940 preschool teachers earn an annual average salary of $27,990. Jobs among Florida’s preschool teachers should rise by 13.9% through 2026 – much higher than the national growth rate of 7% for these early childhood educators.

Special Education Teachers – Kindergarten and Elementary School – There are 5,020 special education teachers in kindergarten and elementary school settings in Florida earning an average of $60,720. The number of special education teachers in Florida’s kindergarten and elementary schools is projected to increase by 12.9% through 2026, which is much higher than the national growth rate of 8% for this profession.

Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare – Education administrators in preschool and childcare settings earn an annual average salary of $48,370. There are 1,700 professionals working in this role in Florida school districts. Jobs for these professionals are expected to increase by 13.4% through 2026, which is higher than the national projected growth rate of 11% for this occupation.

Special Education Teachers, Preschool – There are 1,230 special education teachers in preschool settings in Florida earning an annual average salary of $50,120. The number of special education teacher jobs in Florida preschools is projected to rise by 12.9% through 2026 – that’s significantly higher than the national projected growth rate of 8% for this occupation.

City-Level Job Stats

While statewide average salaries for Florida’s early childhood educators and related professions fall below the national average, some metropolitan areas of the state reveal salaries that far exceed the state average, and that even beat out the national average. For example, Jacksonville’s special education teachers in kindergarten and elementary schools settings earn $65,530 on average, or about $7,000 more than the national average. Similarly, kindergarten teachers in the North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota and Cape Coral-Fort-Myers metropolitan areas earn salaries that exceed the national average. As expected from a state this size, employment levels for early child educators in Florida are some of the highest in the country.

Preschool Teachers

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL – 8,570 teachers earning an average of $30,540
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL – 3,980 teachers earning an average of $25,870
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL – 3,500 teachers earning an average of $25,930
  • Jacksonville, FL – 1,910 teachers earning an average of $29,330
  • Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent, FL – 390 teachers earning an average of $29,400
  • Port St. Lucie, FL – 290 teachers earning an average of $29,480
  • Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL – 830 teachers earning an average of $25,330
  • North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL – 670 teachers earning an average of $27,910
  • Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, FL – 460 teachers earning an average of $26,280
  • Cape Coral-Fort Myers, FL – 750 teachers earning an average of $28,340
  • Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL – 560 teachers earning an average of $27,900
  • Tallahassee, FL – 400 teachers earning an average of $31,700
  • Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin, FL – 400 teachers earning an average of $22,070
  • Naples-Marco Island, FL – 370 teachers earning an average of $28,290
  • Panama City-Lynn Haven-Panama City Beach, FL – average salary of $23,060
  • Sebastian-Vero Beach, FL – 140 teachers earning an average of $29,050
  • Punta Gorda, FL – 130 teachers earning an average of $24,700

Kindergarten Teachers

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL – 2,700 teachers earning an average of $48,990
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL – 1,870 teachers earning an average of $53,160
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL – 1,730 teachers earning an average of $43,840
  • Jacksonville, FL – 770 teachers earning an average of $59,820
  • Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent, FL – 300 teachers earning an average of $51,000
  • Port St. Lucie, FL – 540 teachers earning an average of $51,900
  • Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL – 320 teachers earning an average of $38,480
  • North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL – average salary of $58,750
  • Cape Coral-Fort Myers, FL – 370 teachers earning an average of $62,030
  • Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL – 430 teachers earning an average of $48,630
  • Tallahassee, FL – average salary of $39,920
  • Panama City-Lynn Haven-Panama City Beach, FL – 120 teachers earning an average of $42,270

Special Education Teachers – Preschool

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL – average salary of $49,870
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL – 140 teachers earning an average of $44,240
  • Jacksonville, FL – 100 teachers earning an average of $55,070

Special Education Teachers – Kindergarten and Elementary School

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL – 710 teachers earning an average of $58,520
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL – 1,140 teachers earning an average of $52,300
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL – 410 teachers earning an average of $54,610
  • Jacksonville, FL – 760 teachers earning an average of $65,530
  • North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL – average salary of $54,630
  • Cape Coral-Fort Myers, FL – 320 teachers earning an average of $67,150

Education Administrators – Preschool and Childcare

  • Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach, FL – 560 administrators earning an average of $48,340
  • Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL – 250 administrators earning an average of $48,800
  • Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL – 210 administrators earning an average of $43,910
  • Jacksonville, FL – 150 administrators earning an average of $61,380
  • Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent, FL – average salary of $61,010
  • North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL – average salary of $47,630
  • Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, FL – 40 administrators earning an average of $45,790
  • Lakeland-Winter Haven, FL – 40 administrators earning an average of $38,930

 

2018 Occupational Employment Statistics sourced from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) [salary data accessed April 2019] https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_fl.htm#25-0000

BLS salary data represents state and MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) average and median earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries. Employment conditions in your area may vary.

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