Physical-education teachers typically instruct students in the middle to high school level about physical fitness and health. However, they can also teach other age groups in public or private settings. Working hours are usually during the school day and may include coaching one or more sports after school. According to PE Central, a minimum four-year college degree in health and physical education is required, plus courses in teaching methods. Expertise in one or more team sports typically practiced at the school level, such as basketball, football or volleyball, is helpful.
According to PayScale, experience is a big factor in determining salary. Teachers start at $30,386 to $40,231 as of April 2010. At one to four years of experience, they earn $30,869 to $42,292. For five to nine years they receive $37,732 to $53,975 and at 10 to 19 years they make $40,504 to $63,174. Finally, 20 or more years of experience pays $48,266 to $73,216.
The employer can also determine compensation, according to PayScale. A school district averages $34,126 to $50,624, while a college or university pays $33,750 to $56,500. Those working for state and local government earn $34,199 to $57,934, while those in the federal government make $32,500 to $67,328. Those who work for themselves or for a private firm get $30,000 to $40,160, and those in nonprofit organizations receive $34,402 to $56,000.
The city of employment can determine earnings, according to PayScale. Those teaching in New York make $43,000 to $84,000, while those in Washington earn $31,417 to $51,415. Those in San Diego get $35,375 to $46,392, while those in Miami are paid $32,970 to $40,239. Finally, those in Houston receive $85,608 to $51,600 and those in Chicago are compensated at $40,963 to $54,499.
PayScale reports that the type of benefits has a minor impact on pay. Jobs with paid sick leave average $36,006 to $54,675, while those with paid holidays and vacations compensate at $35,296 to $53,197. Instructors receiving 401K plans can expect $33,528 to $49,397, while those with 403B plans get $41,812 to $64,378. Finally, those getting life insurance and disability earn $35,027 to $57,396, while those with education and tuition reimbursement make $36,641 to $54,703.
Certifications can affect the salary range, according to PayScale. A Certified Health Education Specialist receives the highest pay, at $38,726 to $61,562. Those with Master Reading Teacher certificates are also highly rewarded, with earnings of $32,754 to $60,956.