Early Childhood Education Jobs in Kentucky

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If you have aspirations of joining the ranks of Kentucky’s early childhood educators, there’s plenty of reasons to get excited. For starters, jobs here are in demand, particularly for those working in special education, and in the state’s eastern rural areas. And while salary averages for early childhood teachers in Kentucky are lower than the national average, when compared to many of its southern neighbors, they land on top.

For example, kindergarten teachers in Kentucky earn an average salary of $54,510; that’s considerably more than they earn in Tennessee ($50,160) and West Virginia ($47,370).

Kentucky Salary Rankings

#18

in the US for Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education

#26

in the US for Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education

#22

in the US for Special Education Teachers, Preschool

#33

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

#43

in the US for Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare

#42

in the US for Childcare Workers

Early Childhood Jobs in Kentucky

Kindergarten teachers and special ed teachers in kindergarten and elementary settings enjoy the highest average salaries in the Bluegrass State, both exceeding $54,000 annually. Special ed teachers in preschool settings aren’t far behind, earning an average salary of $53,420.

Occupation Total Employed Median Annual Salary % of US Median
Childcare Workers 11,340 $21,540 eks88%
Child, Family, and School Social Workers 7,740 $40,950 eks83%
Special Education Teachers, Kindergarten and Elementary School 3,250 $54,010 eks86%
Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education 3,950 $33,650 eks98%
Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education 2,500 $54,510 eks93%
Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare 440 $42,370 eks78%
Special Education Teachers, Preschool 140 $53,420 eks87%
eks = Salary below nat’l. avg.     check = Salary above nat’l. avg.

Childcare Workers – There are 11,340 childcare workers employed in Kentucky. They earn, on average, $21,540. There’s plenty to look forward to in this profession, thanks to a projected job growth of 11.2% through 2026 – much higher than the national projected increase of 7% for this occupation.

Child, Family, and School Social Workers – There are 7,740 child, family, and school social working in Kentucky, and these professionals earn an average salary of $40,950. Employment among Kentucky’s child, family, and school social workers is projected to rise by 6.2% through 2026.

Kindergarten Teachers, Except Special Education – Kentucky’s 2,500 kindergarten teachers earn an average salary of $54,510. Jobs for kindergarten teachers in Kentucky are projected to increase by 5.9% through 2026.

Preschool Teachers, Except Special Education – The 3,950 preschool teachers in Kentucky earn $33,650 on average, which is just slightly less than the national average of $34,410. Employment among Kentucky’s preschool teachers is expected to increase by 11.4% through 2026 – that’s higher than the national projected increase of 10% for this profession during this period.

Special Education Teachers – Kindergarten and Elementary School – Kentucky’s 3,250 special education teachers in kindergarten and elementary school settings earn an average salary of $54,010. There are about 3,100 more special ed teachers in kindergarten and elementary schools than in preschool settings in Kentucky. Jobs among special education teachers in kindergarten and elementary school settings in Kentucky are projected to rise by 5.1% through 2026.

Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare – There are 440 education administrators employed in preschool and childcare settings in Kentucky and jobs are expected to increase by 11% through 2026. These professionals earn an average salary of $42,370. Employment among Kentucky’s preschool administrators is projected to increase by 13.9% through 2026 – that’s higher than the national projected growth rate of 11% for this occupation.

Special Education Teachers, Preschool – Kentucky is home to 140 special education teachers in preschool settings who earn an average salary of $53,420. Kentucky’s special education teachers in preschool settings should see an employment rise of 20% – much higher than the national projected increase of 8% for this occupation during the same period.

City-Level Job Stats

In Kentucky, the smaller metro areas boast some of the highest salaries. For example, preschool teachers in the Owensboro metro area earn the highest, average salary in the state, at $43,370 – that’s between $7,000-$16,000 more than their colleagues in other parts of Kentucky.

Preschool Teachers

  • Louisville-Jefferson County, KY-IN – 1,520 licensed teachers with an average salary of $28,300
  • Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN –2,710 licensed teachers with an average salary of $33,800
  • Lexington-Fayette – 580 licensed teachers with an average salary of $35,990
  • Clarksville, TN-KY –average salary of $30,280
  • Evansville, IN-KY – 470 licensed teachers with an average salary of $27,190
  • Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH – 400 licensed teachers with an average salary of $30,980
  • Owensboro, KY –60 licensed teachers with an average salary of $43,370

Kindergarten Teachers

  • Louisville-Jefferson County, KY-IN – 630 licensed teachers with an average salary of $61,550
  • Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN – 720 licensed teachers with an average salary of $52,350
  • Lexington-Fayette – 300 licensed teachers with an average salary of $55,640
  • Evansville, IN-KY – 90 licensed teachers with an average salary of $49,760
  • Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH – 200 licensed teachers with an average salary of $45,120
  • Owensboro, KY – 90 licensed teachers with an average salary of $50,580

Special Education Teachers – Preschool

  • Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN – 170 licensed teachers with an average salary of $70,880
  • Lexington-Fayette – 30 licensed teachers with an average salary of $53,340

Special Education Teachers – Kindergarten and Elementary School

  • Louisville-Jefferson County, KY-IN – 710 licensed teachers with an average salary of $60,380
  • Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN – 1,320 licensed teachers with an average salary of $59,890
  • Lexington-Fayette – 380 licensed teachers with an average salary of $59,630
  • Clarksville, TN-KY – average salary of $51,560
  • Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH – 450 licensed teachers with an average salary of $44,620
  • Owensboro, KY – 100 licensed teachers with an average salary of $55,050

Education Administrators – Preschool and Childcare

  • Louisville-Jefferson County, KY-IN – 220 licensed teachers with an average salary of $43,270
  • Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN – 420 licensed teachers with an average salary of $49,920
  • Lexington-Fayette – 40 licensed teachers with an average salary of $46,530
  • Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH – 40 licensed teachers with an average salary of $38,460

 

*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, [salary data accessed April 2019] https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ky.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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