How to become an educational consultant

August 29, 2011

in hot topics, instructional coaching

UPDATE: Check out the new Edupreneur section of my website with more resources for doing educational consulting!

I get emails on a regular basis from educators who want to make the move into consulting, but aren’t sure how to get started. They envision themselves coaching teachers, providing professional development, and supporting schools and teachers in a variety of ways, but can’t find any formal or official way of making the career shift.

I have to admit–I don’t know, either! I am by no means an expert in making a business out of consulting.  I’m still pretty amazed that it’s happening! But since there isn’t much on the web to help people out, I thought my perspective might be helpful. So, this post will explain what worked for me.

The most important step should be taken by anyone who thinks they may want to do some consulting in the future. Actually, it should be taken by everyone! And that first step is: figure out your passion. Do you love helping teachers integrate technology into their instruction? Are you passionate about sharing best practices in a particular subject area? Does the idea of teaching other people how to reach students with disabilities make your heart pound with excitement? “Education” is a really broad area, so narrow down your area(s) of expertise. For me, this was obviously classroom management and helping teachers enjoy their work.

Don’t worry about whether your passion is “monetizable.” Mine didn’t seem to be, and I followed it as a hobby for many years when I was a classroom teacher without any forseeable way of making money. My advice is to focus on what you love and do the work because it brings you joy–make that the definition of success for you. There is no shortage of experts telling teachers how to do their jobs. There IS a shortage of experts who are willing to dedicate themselves to providing educator support–even when there is no immediate pay off for them–because they love what they do and genuinely care about teachers and kids.

Next, establish yourself as an expert. No one ever gave me an official stamp of approval and classified me on some mysterious list as THE Classroom Management Expert. I just put my ideas out there on the web! I started in 2004, and over time, teachers responded to my techniques in increasing numbers and I gained credibility. Having a masters degree and National Board Certification lends a sort of official-ness to my credentials, but I think it’s the voice and experience of a real person that matters most.

Site visitors kept urging me to publish a book, and in 2008, I wrote The Cornerstone. I really enjoyed writing it and released Awakened this past July. Thanks to the internet and major changes in the publishing industry, it’s getting easier and easier to starting your own publishing company as I did, or even just self-publish your book. If you feel like you have a book inside you waiting to be written, go for it! Write about what you know and love. Being a published author will lend you credibility, book royalties will boost your passive income flow, and you’ll have a manual for teachers and schools to purchase when you give professional development seminars.


Of course, you can get your name out there and establish a strong reputation in many other ways. I think it’s crucial to develop a professional community network through Twitter and blogging.  Ask questions, participate in conversations, read books, and share what works (and what doesn’t) in your experience. Let your website or blog serve as a collection of your work and experience. Attending and presenting at conferences, both online and in person, is a fantastic way to connect with other educators. If these types of networking and idea-sharing activities don’t excite you, then you probably won’t enjoy consulting. Networking is never ending in this field and should be done just because you love connecting with educators, not because you’re hoping to get work . The most successful consultants I know maintain an extremely active web presence because they like sharing ideas–they’re already booked years in advance, but they network out of passion. For the most part, they’re just there to give and to learn.

Be prepared to read and write constantly. It’s important to stay current in the field, so read LOTS of blogs (and discuss them in the comments.) Relationship building is integral, so even when reading books, I’ll still go online and leave reviews on my website, Amazon, etc. to spark discussion and share ideas. I answer every email I get from teachers on any subject from room arrangement to behavior modification to parent communication issues. I respond to each and every comment on my blog. Is all of this required? No. Do I get paid for this? No. But reading and writing online is a big part of being a consultant in the 21st century, and if the very thought of those tasks exhausts you, you’re better off thinking of a different line of work.

So, how do you actually get consulting jobs? Think outside the box in terms of work opportunities. You’re probably going to have to let go of the dream of job security, health benefits, and a pension. Most (but not all) consultancy work is part time, per diem. For me, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. Being an educational consultant means I have complete and total freedom to accept the work I like and reject what’s not the best fit for me. I make my own schedule and I don’t get bogged down in the politics that comes from being employed by a school district.

Working for a consultancy company can be fantastic. In New York City, there are several private companies who hire consultants and then school systems negotiate contracts with the companies. The organization I work for now is contracted with the NYCDOE as well as several regional religious boards of education, and I get the majority of my work through them. Sure, the company takes a cut from my earnings, but their outstanding reputation also means they get a lot of contracted work and command top dollar for it. They also set up the payments, negotiate the number of days and hours worked, hold meetings with the DOE, and handle other stuff that can really be a drag if you have to handle it yourself. And contrary to popular belief, the companies I’m familiar with (four major, nationwide organizations) do NOT micromanage the work. There is some paperwork to complete for documentation purposes, of course, but the goals of the consultancy and the way those goals are met is determined jointly by the consultant and school administration. The work is very much customized and school-based; the consultants are not required to push an agenda or sell a product. It’s solely about meeting the needs of kids and teachers. If this flexibility is important to you, make sure the companies you apply to work with hold the same ideal.

Use a feed reader to keep your eye on the job listings. To debunk a major myth: Craiglist is not a bad place to find work! I got hired by three major companies through their Craigslist ads! I set up a specific search on Monster.com, Craiglist, and The New York Times, and had the job listings sent to me via Google Reader. This way, not only were all the listings permanently archived for me, they were also searchable: I could type “coach” or “consultant” into Google Reader and read only the listings that fit what I was looking for if I didn’t want to scroll through all of them.


Being an independent consultant–working for yourself or your own company–is another option. I do that, as well, as the owner and founder of Due Season Press and Educational Services. Out of personal preference, I don’t actively look for independent consulting work, but I do regularly have schools, districts, and universities invite me to speak and conduct professional development for them. All of this work has come through my web and social media presence: someone reads my stuff, likes me, and gets their organization to book me. I don’t have set rates and usually way under-price myself because I know the budget crunch everyone is facing. That’s fine! These are all people who sought me out because they respect me and my work–they want me to help them implement my ideas, and I’m excited to do it!

Sometimes people ask questions that make it very clear they want to measure my success in concrete terms: How many books have you sold? How much revenue do you get from your website? How many days a month are you working in schools? I crunch the numbers a few times a year to make sure I’m being fiscally responsible, but I don’t pay close attention to any of that stuff on a daily basis. I measure my success as a consultant this way: Am I living out my passion? That sounds a little pie-in-the-sky, but it’s been the key to my contentment in this field where money is not guaranteed and many of the tasks don’t result directly in gaining income.  Always do what you love because you love doing it. Some projects will bring more money, recognition, and opportunities than others, but if you complete each one because of your passion for the field and a sincere desire to help other people, EVERY project will be worth doing.

So, that’s been my experience. Over to you–questions? Disagreements? Anyone on their own path to being a consultant? Anyone taking a more business-minded approach to this career shift? Tips? Advice?

UPDATE 1/5/12:

I’ve set up a new Edupreneur section of my website with more resources! Also, I am now available on a very limited basis to work one-on-one to answer your specific questions about getting started as an educational consultant or becoming a “teacher-preneur.” Phone consultations can be arranged for teachers anywhere in world!  If you have iChat or Skype, we can speak ‘face-to-face’ over the internet via video chat. I can help you get started with:

* educational consulting
* conducting staff development
* instructional coaching
* publishing your book
* social networking
* building a website
* blogging best practices
* monetizing your blog
* creating and selling teacher resources

The rate for phone/video chat consultations with individual teachers is $49 for thirty minutes. Send me an email and let me know what your needs are, and if my current schedule permits, we’ll set up a time to chat!

Ideas for edupreneursBecoming an Educational Consultant
Blogging Tips for Teachers
Monetizing Your Teaching Blog
Publishing a Teaching Book
Teaching Blog Traffic School

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Angela was a classroom teacher for 11 years and currently works as an instructional coach and educational consultant based in New York City. She's created a webinar series on pro-active behavior management and has written 3 books for educators. Check out the blog and free teacher resource pages for photos, tips & tricks, activities, printables, and more.

{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Katie Wright-Sabbatino September 5, 2011 at 12:24 am

Angela~
Thanks so much for this post! It’s almost as if you read my mind! While I adore my classroom position and remain passionate about implementing arts integration throughout my teaching, the idea of educational consultancy has entered my mind. I know you can only speak about what has worked for you, but it is reassuring to know that your path has been successful. The teachers, administrators, and students that you work with are very lucky to have you! Best wishes for a great year–
katie

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2 Angela Watson September 6, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Hi, Katie! Thank you for the kind words. You can definitely do consulting as a side pursuit–I know many, many teachers who keep their classroom positions and consult on their own time. It’s a great way to pursue two different types of work that you love, it keeps you current on what’s REALLY happening in the classroom, and it relieves the pressure of wondering how you’ll be able to maintain a steady income as a consultant. :-)

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3 Cherlynn Weisinger September 5, 2011 at 8:09 am

Angela,
I could not have found you at a better time in my life. I just retired after 29 years in public education. I am 51 years old and have so much more to give to literacy. My true passion is with creating wonderful lessons to go with great literature and how to make children become life long readers at all ages. I have taught grades anywhere from 1st – 6th, been a dyslexia teacher and a campus literacy coach. But now, I am ready to do staff development for teachers everywhere and share all of the ideas in my head that are ready to jump out onto a page. After reading how to get start here on your page, I feel so much better. I have ordered my business cards and stationary to use when I am ready to start booking myself at some conferences. I think my problem with getting started was I didn’t look at my true passion and everything was looking to broad for me. Now, I can size everything down and start out smaller like you did, I would love to keep in contact with you, because I think what you have done is exactly the direction I am headed too. Just like you said, “In education there is never enough sharing and experts, because it is such a broad field of study.” Thank you so much for helping me find a focus on how to get started on my reading consulting business. This has been my dream for years and now I can head in the right direction thanks to you!!!

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4 Angela Watson September 6, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Hi, Cherlynn! What an inspiring comment you left! Thank you for sharing that. I’m so happy to hear that you know what true passion is–and I think it’s something that offers great value to the education community. Getting business cards is a good first step. Please do keep in contact. :-)

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5 Gerald Klumas September 5, 2011 at 10:49 am

Thanks Angela

My life has been in the education field from Astronut simulation training to secondary teaching. My masters is in secondary education with a passion in “Distant Learning.” I am looking forward to Education Consulting. Please contact me on how to put my background into the consulting area.

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6 Angela Watson September 6, 2011 at 4:10 pm

Hi, Gerald! What an amazing background you have! I’m not sure what other advice I can offer you, but if you have any specific questions, please feel free to ask! You can do so right here in the comments, as I’m sure other people have similar questions. You can also email me at angelawatson [at] live [dot] com. :-)

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7 KKnight September 6, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Thank you for your article. I have been a consultant in a public school district in New York for 15 years for a contracted number of hours each year. The district supt. now has told me they can no longer hire me because their new law firm says it is illegal. What do you think? Any ideas where to get info on this? Wondering if this was an excuse? Thanks for any insights.

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8 Angela Watson September 10, 2011 at 4:10 pm

Hmm, that sounds very strange to me! Every school district I know hires consultants in some capacity. I would ask for more information–i.e., is there anything you can do in terms of credentials, etc. to meet the qualifications the district now needs for consultants. Have you spoken to other consultants in your district to see if this rule is affecting them? I hope that you can find some resolution here.

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9 CCropper December 5, 2012 at 5:50 pm

It is not that the systems wouldn’t hire you if they could, the state has passed a law that retirees of the State Teacher Retirement System can only work as substitute teachers or adjunct professors at a university. In doing this work, you can only make 25% of you retirement benefits. If you work in any capacity other than as prescribed, you forfeit you retirement during your work time engagement and if you exceed the 25% allotment. The 25% substitute or adjunct is a new addition. Before that (as of 2010) you could not work at all. This became a Louisiana Law June 1, 2010.

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10 CCroppper September 10, 2011 at 10:13 am

I am trying to get started as an educational consultant. I have gotten a business license, a tax id. and business cards. I have a master level degree in education and supervision and a masters degree in social work, children and families. I have been retired from education for 5 years (still love the thrill of the educational arena) and spend the last few years working with children and families in a medical setting. How do I kick start my educational background to help make my credentials more current? I have looked for classes, and staff development programs that I could take that would help to update certifications and expertise. I also live in a state that does not allow retirees to return to the educational setting without penalty! Help

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11 Angela Watson September 10, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Personally, I think that networking and informal professional development will yield greater results than taking formal courses. Do you need to take courses to update your certification? How flexible is your state in terms of what types of PD they would accept? I would recommend going to conferences in your state to make connections and learn what’s new in your field.

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12 Donald October 13, 2011 at 10:31 am

Hello Angela, I am an elementary school teacher with 21 years experience. I am working on a book which I hope will jump start my career as a consultant. My book is about making elementary math simple. Do you think this is narrow enough to pursue? I thank you for all the the ideas you have shared with us.

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13 Angela Watson October 14, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Hi, Donald! I’m actually working on a web page for the site now about how to publish your own book and how that can be used to drive your consultancy. I would definitely encourage you to finish writing your book and see what kind of options open up for you. I have had countless people tell me they are writing a book and want advice about what to do next, but I don’t offer advice for the next step until the book is done. Only one person who contacted me about publishing actually wrote back later to say they finished writing their book! Writing is the hardest and most important step, and I think that’s why so many people get stuck there.

Your topic (making elementary math simple) is a great one. It sounds like you’ve got a lot to contribute to other educators! I’m glad you’re pursuing it. Please stay in touch and let me know if you have any more questions. I’ll be happy to help in any way I can.

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14 Douglas October 23, 2011 at 10:59 am

Angela,
Thanks for the info! I just moved to NYC after working in CA as an Elementary Principal. After contemplating taking a Principal job in NYC , I have decided to go into consulting and focus on behavior management in schools. I would be interested in talking with you more to pick your brain.
Best,
Douglas

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15 Michael November 1, 2011 at 4:16 pm

Hi Angela,

I am currently a district level science curriculum coordinator and just began coursework on a PhD in Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching. Bottom line, I have too much on my plate. I am enjoying my PhD coursework so much and can’t give it up to work, yet I still need at least a little income (more than I can get teaching one or two undergrad courses at the university). There are several small districts around me that I know do not have a district level science coordinator or specialist to provide science specific assistance with respect to instructional strategies, etc. I have been thinking about trying to consult for a couple of these districts and go to school full time. Is the best way to get to these districts just to cold call (or visit)? I also want to price my services VERY competitively. Any ideas, thoughts, or suggestions in what my next step should be? Thanks for the information that you have already provided. Hoping you may have a little more for me.

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16 Angela Watson November 12, 2011 at 12:03 am

Hi, Michael! Sounds like a good plan–you’ve identified a specific need in your neighboring districts and have a solution to offer. If you have any connections in those districts, you might want to go through them–get a teacher to ask his/her principal if you can call and set up an appointment. You may ask to schedule a 15 minute meeting with the principal to talk about an offer of free professional development for the staff (that might get the principal’s attention.) In the meeting, you can explain what you offer as well as your intentions (to eventually become a consultant for them.) Offer to do an hour long training after school one day so they can get a feel for your fit with the staff and how you can best be used.

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17 Eva November 4, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Hello Angela, I am an elementary school teacher with 15 years experience. I have an Early Childhood degree with a concentration in Psychology. I am also ESL endorsed. I have taught Kindergarten ESL to general English Language Learners as well as to Refugees/Newcomers. Teaching ESL has definitely been my passion. Lately, I am just plain exhausted. I can’t sleep at night, I get debilitating headaches. More and more is expected. I am being expected to not only plan for my lessons and teach but also to take on more and more administrative and clerical work as well as morning/afternoon yard duty, morning/afternoon bus duty, as well as serve breakfast in our classroom. I still enjoy the essence of teaching but all the other “stuff” is crowding out the joy. I would greatly appreciate any advice about where to get started in the consulting work. Thank you in advance.

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18 Angela Watson November 11, 2011 at 11:38 pm

Hi, Eva! What a wonderfully diverse teaching/educational background you have–and how great that you’ve identified the area you’re most passionate about! I can totally relate to loving teaching, but needing to move out of the classroom for the sake of your own sanity. Maybe an ancillary teaching position would work for you–ESL small group teacher or something of the sort? Maybe coaching? I’m not sure what opportunities are available in your district/community, but your skill set is definitely in demand in many areas.

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19 Michelle Stimpson December 18, 2011 at 12:18 am

Hi Angela,
Thanks so much for the information! I, too, stumbled into educational consulting and have done so successfully since 2004 in addition to writing faith-based novels. I really hadn’t given much thought to the idea of partnering with national firms – thanks so much for the insight! Blessings upon you and your business!

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20 Angela Watson December 21, 2011 at 4:48 pm

Thanks, Michelle! All the best to you! Do you have a website you’d like to share?

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21 loventeachn December 21, 2011 at 4:35 pm

Just going through all of your website (printed and placed in a binder to travel with me over break!), and wanted to say thank you for the specifics on how to start participating in online forums to connect with others and share ideas. This will help me formulate what topics are popular and most informative. I agree with your statement about 21st century learning. This is the current society, so you must embrace it to find success. Maybe a Do’s AndDont’s page could be your next blog topic! I love your attitude about doing what you love regardless of the paycheck. It’s most rewarding. Thanks so much for this info! HAPPY HOLIDAYS :)

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22 Angela Watson December 21, 2011 at 4:57 pm

I think I was just emailing you when you were commenting! So funny! I like the blog post idea…thanks for that! Have a WONDERFUL Christmas and a very happy new year!

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23 Nicole Stewart-Seawright February 14, 2012 at 2:27 pm

I am the parent of a child with the whole cocktail: Bipolar, ADHD, Asperger, and Intermittent Explosive Disorder. I really want to be a consultant, as I have heard from many teachers that they do not have any training in any special needs. I have the education, MS in Ed, EdD dissertation started, but I have no experience in this area. I actually write the bulk of my daughter’s IEP. How would a novice begin?

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24 curtis March 12, 2012 at 11:16 pm

Thank you fo the info. I am currently trying to become a school consultant that specializes in school climates.I am having a hard time making the connection and also getting training in this field. I have a great program i wrote but beng un employed it hard to fnd someone who is willing to help.

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25 Arlene March 24, 2012 at 10:03 pm

Hi Angela,

It was great reading your ideas on education consulting. I have been in the field of education for several years now and have worked in many capacities. I really would like to become my own boss but more importantly, help teachers to become successful. I am completing my doctoral dissertation by the end of this summer and seriously would like to consult and teach a few college courses. I would love the opportunity to speak with you on how to get started once I complete my dissertation.

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26 Pat April 5, 2012 at 10:01 pm

Angela,
I was pleased to find your site. I think you are absolutely right – do what you love to do. I have been thinking about consulting. I would love to help other teachers effectively integrate technology into their classrooms. I recently finished a masters in Education Media Design Technology. I also spent the last seven years learning everything I could about how to use technology in my alternative high school classroom. I know there are a lot of smaller schools in my area where teachers might not have the opportunity to get this kind of professional development. I am hoping to reach out to teachers in those schools. I would love to be able to share all the cool stuff I’ve been learning. I also have made my share of mistakes, and will be able to tell them what to avoid! I look forward to following your blog.

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27 Latasha Ferguson July 2, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Hi! Thank you for this awesome article. How would I apply to work as a consultant for a private consultancy company? You mentioned 4 major companies. Can you disclose those? Lastly, I was looking at an opportunity through Monster.com but the company is stating that the training is $675 to attend. Is this normal to pay for training or could this be a scam?

Thanks so much for your help!

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28 Christine Fuller August 21, 2012 at 9:28 pm

Hi Angela,
I have been in the self contained setting for 30 years. I earned a masters degree in special ed. online in hopes of doing something “different”. The students are wonderful, however, the paperwork, legality, politics, lack of respect and overall dissatisfaction with my current position has me searching for something else. I want to go out on top rather than crawling out the door because of total burnout. It is so frustrating because I feel as if I have so much to share with other special educators due to my experience. I truly feel as if I am too qualified to be in the classroom anymore and that my expertise could be shared to improve the quality of instruction taking place in special needs classrooms. I am not sure how to approach a career change which will move me in this direction. Thank you for your time. Christine Fuller

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29 Dr. Gwen E. McClinton August 26, 2012 at 11:40 am

Good morning Angela,
It was a pleasure reading your article which I find inspiring. I would like to seek opportunities as an educational consultant. I have an extensive history in the field of education that include teaching at the elementary, middle, higher education and administration. I am a recent retiree from the Chicago Public School system and native Chicagoan. I recently received a Paralegal/Legal Assistant Certificate. I would like to connect with with you to discover how I should get started. I lean toward an independent contractor arena as most of my career is education based. I invite you (if you have time) to take a look at my LinkedIn page to get a general idea of my background. Please let me know how we can connect.

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30 Mark Williams October 31, 2012 at 3:47 am

Hi Angela,
I have just read your article about becoming an educational consultant and am very interested in further information.

My particular interest in consultancy stems mainly from the fact that I have been made redundant from my full time teaching post last year and would like to return to teaching from a different perspective i.e consultancy.

Regretably I have had some negative experiences of using employment agencies in recent months to find teaching assignments and feel reluctant to continue this route. I feel that I could much better represent myself as a consultant to prospective clients and thus generate my own teaching assigmnents on a freelance basis.

If you can forward me any useful information I would be grateful.

Regards
Mark

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31 Angela Watson November 1, 2012 at 10:22 am

Hi, Mark! The article above shares some general information about getting started in consultancy. There are not a lot of resources on this online, unfortunately. When I find additional resources, I’ll add them to the site. All the best to you!

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32 michelle December 5, 2012 at 4:45 pm

Hi Angela,

This was a great read! i recently thought about becomin an educational consultant before even knowing the position so solidly existed (it’s not really that spoken about, or at least not in the schools and educational systems i have been in). I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind sharing the names of the 4 major consulting firms in NYC that you mentioned. I have been doing research online but I truly only came across 1 that seems to be established in NYC, and then the Dept. of Ed. as another. Thank you in advance, and again, thank you for your article! It’s been an even bigger push for my aspirations.

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33 Angela Watson December 5, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Hi, Michelle! I am familiar with AUSSIE/Editure PD, Teaching Matters, Catapult, and Children’s Literacy Initiative, though I’m sure there are others. I’m not sure which ones are hiring now but in the past, they have all advertised on Craigslist and/or in the New York Times, so those are good places to start. All the best to you!

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34 Amy December 19, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Hello Angela!! You know after reading your story, I was thinking in my head “that is me.” This is my 14th year of teaching 1st and 2nd grade and I LOVE the classroom and seeing their little minds at work, I am tired of the politics that is getting in the way of letting us teach. I am currently working on my principal’s licensure and will finish up this coming summer. I already have a masters in curriculum and instruction but thought I would add this endorsement on. However, I don’t know if that is the career path I want to take either. My passion is data in the classroom. I work on our district leadership team and am on the goal that works with data. I feel that there is so much more out there to do and share with others on this topic. I would be interested in hearing your take on whether or not data is an area that is need for consulting and where to take my interests in this. Thanks for your site and all the information you shared. Like you, I have pondered for probably the last 5yrs. knowing that I have interests in sharing what I know outside of the classroom but just not sure how to make that happen.
Thanks!! Amy

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35 Angela Watson December 19, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Hi, Amy! I absolutely think data is a topic that schools would like consultancy and PD on! If that’s your passion, even better. I say go for it!

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36 Rebecca January 2, 2013 at 12:09 am

Hi Angela, I am very much interested in Consulting and came across your website by accident, however I believe it was meant for me to see. I believe I am only in the beginning stages, but I’m very passionate about wanting to get started with my business. Your website has turly inspired me to build my website utlizing different resources that are applicable to teachers. Any information you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

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37 Cindy Stanaback January 24, 2013 at 9:04 am

I am ready for a new adventure but I still love teaching. I enjoyed reading your information about consulting. It sounds like a blending of both. I am very interested to learn more. Thanks so much.

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38 Meg March 3, 2013 at 9:40 pm

Dear Angela,

Hi! I came across your site and hoped I could ask you a couple of questions. I’ve been a teacher for 11 years and would like to get involved in the consulting piece of education. I’m also a certified life coach, and hope I can use this in consulting.
What would be my next best step? I’d love the chance to work with teachers on classroom management and character Ed. I can also see myself working with parents in schools, or even the students.
Any advice/help you can offer would be appreciated.
Thanks. Meg

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39 Angela Watson March 4, 2013 at 4:21 pm

Hi, Meg! I’d recommend you follow the steps explained in the article: establishing yourself as an expert, building an internet presence, etc. If you have specific questions you’d like to ask about your personal situation, please email me and request an individual consultation (rates are listed in the article.) Thanks!

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40 Jason Bentley April 5, 2013 at 11:33 am

Angela,

Reading this was truly inspiring! I have 5 years of classroom experience as an elementary teacher, plus I hold my Master’s in education curriculum and instruction. I stepped down from the classroom setting after suffering from burnout and the demands that have been placed on teachers in regards to standardized testing. However, I still hold a passion for education and I have been wanting to get back into the education field. A friend of mine suggested I look at becoming an education consultant, so i decided to do some research, and I came across this article! I realize it takes a lot to start on your own and be an independent education consultant, but I would at least like to look at working for a consulting firm, to get my foot in the door. I live in Orlando, Florida, where the education system needs a lot of help! How could I get into this market here in Florida? Are there any education consulting firms in the city, or even elsewhere that hire consultants for remote locations? Like I said I am new to this, but have a true passion to find myself back in education and provide my passion for curriculum!

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41 Angela Watson April 11, 2013 at 9:06 pm

Hi, Jason! I would recommend looking for consulting firms in your area using the methods mentioned in the article. I’m not personally familiar with any, but I know Florida school systems do occasionally bring in outside consultants. All the best to you!

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42 Dr. Christine M. Melone April 25, 2013 at 3:36 pm

I appreciate all the helpful comments.

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43 Shannon Gonzalez May 20, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Hi Angela!
I, too have been a classroom teacher for 12 years. I absolutely love teaching, but unfortunately the job had been more about testing in the multiple choice format, and the scores are all school districts seem to care about. There is an enormous amount of time and money dumped into testing, yet the results are not always a reflection of what the student actually knows and has learned about the subject. I have taught all social studies subjects from grade 6-12, and in California, New York (Francis Lewis HS in Fresh Meadows) & an affluent area of Long Island, and low-performing schools in Houston, Texas, as well as Pasadena Texas which the school has students from a middle-class neighborhood. In all of these schools I have learned how to teach students conquer the tests, and manage classrooms effectively through various systems-some borrowed from the book Teach Like a Champion, some systems I have created. I have so many ideas on methods, management, curriculum, and changing the structure of the school building itself, as well as how teachers and students move throughout their day–all to benefit the students. I feel that students have begun to loose the ability to think for themselves, and also care for education, and their peers. I have so many ideas and solutions, but I do not know where to start. I’m writing a book, seeking classroom employment, but I really want to start a consulting business, join a study, and work on reforming many aspects of public education. I really appreciate your bio, because that is where I am right now. No one listens in districts, they are all so political- from coast to coast. I just wanted to let you know some of my ideas, and express appreciation for your work. I want to do what you do. I’m happy it is possible to make to switch-from classroom teacher to working as a consultant in a firm.

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44 Michelle Stimpson May 21, 2013 at 3:26 pm

I contributed to this particular conversation a few years ago. In the meanwhile, I’ have written a book entitled “Leaving the Classroom” for educators who are considering moving toward other professional options. It’s available online and in print format. Best to you!

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45 Stefanie October 16, 2013 at 9:47 pm

Thank you for your post! I am in talks with a school to begin consulting part time for them! I am very eager to gain the experience and share my passion with the new teachers there. I will look ahead to your “eduprenuer” page too.

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46 Lori Licker January 25, 2014 at 10:07 pm

Hi Angela,
I am an Occupational Therapist with over 30 years of experience. I wrote and self-published a fun and innovative handwriting curriculum, “Writing-Right with Professor Pendleton Pencil”. It is the most exciting thing for me to get feedback from teachers about how the children love learning with the program and are making improvements in their handwriting skills! Pendleton and I visit the schools to provide handwriting workshops and I offer Professional Development Workshops for teachers. I would love to do this full-time. I offer these workshops (without a fee) if my handwriting program is purchased by a pre-school or school district. I was wondering if you could tell me what a reasonable fee would be for a Consultant to provide Professional Development Seminars? I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks so much! Lori

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47 Steve Bogg February 23, 2014 at 3:53 pm

Hi Angela,

I too have 11 years in education and currently work as a vice principal of an academy school. I would really like advice on becoming a consultant, but don’t know where to start and if there are any jobs out there. Any advice you could offer would be really appreciated.
Regards
Steve
I am based in the UK

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