Research Summary. Here are some key points about hiring teacher assistants in the United States:

  • There are currently 2,078,561 teacher assistants in the US, as well as 77,358 job openings.
  • Teacher assistants are in the highest demand in Las Vegas, NV, with 186 current job openings.
  • The median cost to hire a teacher assistant is $1,633.
  • It takes between 36 and 42 days to fill the average role in the US.
  • Human Resources use 15% of their expenses on recruitment on average.
  • On average, it takes around 12 weeks for a new teacher assistant to become settled and show total productivity levels at work.

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How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Teacher Assistant

Recruiting teacher assistants involves both the one-time costs of hiring and the ongoing costs of adding a new employee to your team. Your spending during the hiring process will mostly be on things like promoting the job on job boards, reviewing and interviewing candidates, and onboarding the new hire. Ongoing costs will obviously involve the employee's salary, but also may include things like benefits.

Teacher assistants earn a median yearly salary is $27,103 a year in the US. However, if you're looking to find teacher assistants for hire on a contract or per-project basis, hourly rates typically range between $10 and $16.

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How to hire a Teacher Assistant, step by step

To hire a teacher assistant, you should clearly understand the skills and experience you are looking for in a candidate, and allocate a budget for the position. You will also need to post and promote the job opening to reach potential candidates. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to hire a teacher assistant:

  • Step 1: Identify your needs
  • Step 2: Create an ideal candidate profile
  • Step 3: Make a budget
  • Step 4: Writing a teacher assistant job description
  • Step 5: Post the job
  • Step 6: Interview process
  • Step 7: Send a job offer and onboard your new teacher assistant
  • Step 8: Go through the checklist for the hiring process

Identify Your Needs

The first step in the teacher assistant hiring process is determining what type of worker you actually need. For example, certain roles might require a full-time employee, whereas others can be done by part-time workers or contractors.

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A teacher assistant's background is also an important factor in determining whether they'll be a good fit for the position. For example, teacher assistants from different industries or fields will have radically different experiences and will bring different viewpoints to the role. You also need to consider the candidate's previous level of experience to make sure they'll be comfortable with the job's level of seniority.

The list breaks down common teacher assistant roles and compares their salaries.

Type Of Teacher AssistantDescriptionHourly Rate
Teacher AssistantTeacher assistants work under a teacher’s supervision to give students additional attention and instruction.$10-16
Substitute School TeacherA substitute teacher is liable for providing learning instruction and managing classroom settings in the absence of the regular teacher. They are responsible for checking student attendance, explaining homework, and maintaining classroom cleanliness... Show More$11-22
Substitute TeacherSubstitute teachers are responsible for filling in the role of regular teachers who will not be able to come to school. They may be engaged short-term or long-term, depending on the need... Show More$11-21

Create An Ideal Candidate Profile

Before you start to recruit teacher assistants, imagine the ideal employee for this position and begin creating a profile and job description. What skills do they have, and what responsibilities do they have to be proficient in?

Here are some of the most common teacher assistant skills:

Common Skills:
  • CPR
  • Child Care
  • Mathematics
  • Art Projects
  • Instructional Materials
  • Learning Environment
  • Classroom Environment
  • Classroom Management
  • Social Development
  • IEP
  • TA
  • Homework Assignments
  • Administration Policies
  • Pre-K
Check All Skills

Here are the most common teacher assistant responsibilities:

  • Lead chemistry recitations, prepare lessons, and coordinate student problem solving sessions.
  • Manage student supervision in various environments including classrooms, halls, cafeterias, schoolyards, gymnasiums, and field trip locations.
  • Lead debates with advance students on topics including globalization, economics, and political history.
  • Help clients with ADL's.
  • Assist MH/MR clients with ADL's.
  • Substitute teacher grades from k-5.
Check all Duties

Beyond the nuts and bolts, cultural fit is an important factor. It might help to ask yourself how your ideal teacher assistant will live by the company's mission statement and contribute to the team dynamic you already have in place. Clearly communicating this vision in your teacher assistant job description will help attract candidates who are better suited for the role.

Most Common States For Teacher Assistants In The US

Rank #State# Of Jobs% of PopulationAvg. Salary
2New Jersey1,30815%$27,633

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Make A Budget

Including a salary range in the job description is a good way to get more applicants. A teacher assistant salary can be affected by several factors, such as the location of the job, their level of experience, education and certifications, and the prestige of the employer. For example, the average salary for a teacher assistant in Virginia may be lower than in Rhode Island, and an entry-level engineer typically earns less than a senior-level teacher assistant. Additionally, a teacher assistant with lots of experience in the field may command a higher salary as a result.

Updated March 16, 2023

Teacher Assistant Salary Estimate


$27,103 yearly

Entry level Salary
$21,000 yearly

Teacher Assistant Average Salary By Location

RankStateAvg. SalaryHourly RateJob Count
1Rhode Island$31,927$151
4New York$29,509$141

Teacher Assistant Average Salary By Company

Writing a Teacher Assistant Job Description

A job description for a teacher assistant role includes a summary of the job's main responsibilities, required skills, and preferred background experience. Including a salary range can also go a long way in attracting more candidates to apply, and showing the first name of the hiring manager can also make applicants more comfortable. As an example, here's a teacher assistant job description:

Example of Full Job Description

Under the direct supervision of the Lead Teacher, the Head Start Teacher Assistant will assist in the delivery of Teaching Strategies Gold, and The Creative Curriculum System for Preschool for multi-ethnic and multi-cultural children ages 3-5. Must have a strong foundation in Early Childhood Development.

K ey D uties and Responsibilities include

Assist Lead Teacher in daily educational plan and classroom implementation. Assist in creation of classroom atmosphere in which children can develop physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially. Use The Creative Curriculum System for Preschool in the classroom instruction that meets individual needs. Prepare and report, through scheduled interviews, home visits, and written evaluations: performances/assessment reports, child/program evaluation reports, child Individual Education Plan (IEP)

Assist Lead Teacher in delivery of appropriate nutrition education activities,

Implementation of social service and health programs.

Attend staff development meetings, workshops and conferences as required.

Provide an atmosphere of respect for children, parents and other staff.

Provide a learning environment that is developmentally and culturally appropriate.

Other duties as assigned.

M inimum R equ ir ed E du c at ion/Sk ills / Ex p er ience

Associate Degree in Early Childhood Development, or related field that includes 15 semester hours in Early Childhood Education

Present documentation of ability to work in the USA

American Red Cross First Aid/CPR Certificates

Complete all forms upon offer and acceptance as per DCFS, City of Chicago and Head Start licensing standards (including 3 letters of recommendation, Criminal Background Check, Fingerprinting and Childs Abuse and Neglect Background Check, etc…)

Bilingual in English/Spanish preferred

Excellent communication and writing skills

Ability to relate to multi-ethnic, multi-cultural community

Excellent punctuality and attendance skills

Ability to accept guidance and supervision

Good computer skills

Statement of Non Discrimination
Northwestern Settlement is proud to be an equal opportunity employer, making all employment decisions, including recruiting, hiring, training, and promoting without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, veteran status or any other characteristic or classification protected by law.

Post A Job

There are various strategies that you can use to find the right teacher assistant for your business:

  • Consider promoting from within or recruiting from your existing workforce.
  • Ask for referrals from friends, family members, and current employees.
  • Attend job fairs at local colleges to find candidates who meet your education requirements.
  • Use social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to reach potential job candidates.

Post your job online:

  • Post your teacher assistant job on Zippia to find and recruit teacher assistant candidates who meet your exact specifications.
  • Use field-specific websites.
  • Post a job on free websites.

Interview Process

Your first interview with teacher assistant candidates should focus on their interest in the role and their specific background experience. As the hiring process goes on, you can learn more about how they'd fit into the company culture in later rounds of interviews.

It's also a good idea to ask about candidates' special skills and talents to see if they map with your ideal candidate profile. If you think a candidate is good enough for the next step, you can move on to the technical interview.

The right interview questions can help you assess a candidate's hard skills, behavioral intelligence, and soft skills.

Send A Job Offer And Onboard Your New Teacher Assistant

Once you've decided on a perfect teacher assistant candidate, it's time to write an offer letter. In addition to salary, it should also include details such as benefits and perks available to the employee. Qualified candidates may be considered for other positions, so make sure your offer is competitive. Candidates may wish to negotiate. Once you've settled on the details, formalize your agreement with a contract.

It's also important to follow up with applicants who do not get the job with an email letting them know that the position is filled.

To prepare for the new employee's start date, you can create an onboarding schedule and complete any necessary paperwork, such as employee action forms and onboarding documents like I-9 forms, benefits enrollment, and federal and state tax forms. Human Resources should also ensure that a new employee file is created.

Go Through The Checklist For The Hiring Process

  • Determine employee type (full-time, part-time, contractor, etc.)
  • Submit a job requisition form to the HR department
  • Define job responsibilities and requirements
  • Establish budget and timeline
  • Determine hiring decision makers for the role
  • Write job description
  • Post job on job boards, company website, etc.
  • Promote the job internally
  • Process applications through applicant tracking system
  • Review resumes and cover letters
  • Shortlist candidates for screening
  • Hold phone/virtual interview screening with first round of candidates
  • Conduct in-person interviews with top candidates from first round
  • Score candidates based on weighted criteria (e.g., experience, education, background, cultural fit, skill set, etc.)
  • Conduct background checks on top candidates
  • Check references of top candidates
  • Consult with HR and hiring decision makers on job offer specifics
  • Extend offer to top candidate(s)
  • Receive formal job offer acceptance and signed employment contract
  • Inform other candidates that the position has been filled
  • Set and communicate onboarding schedule to new hire(s)
  • Complete new hire paperwork (i9, benefits enrollment, tax forms, etc.)
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Hiring Teacher Assistants FAQs

How Much Does A Good Teacher Assistant Cost?

A good teacher assistant costs $13.03 an hour in the US. However, it can vary based on factors such as the teacher assistant experience, abilities, industry, and the specific requirements of your business.

What Are The Duties Of A Teacher Assistant?

The duties of a teacher assistant are:
  • Lead chemistry recitations, prepare lessons, and coordinate student problem solving sessions.
  • Manage student supervision in various environments including classrooms, halls, cafeterias, schoolyards, gymnasiums, and field trip locations.
  • Lead debates with advance students on topics including globalization, economics, and political history.

Should I Hire A Teacher Assistant With No Experience?

Yes, you should hire a teacher assistant with no experience. Hiring an entry-level teacher assistant with no experience offers versatility for your team. They may lack some qualifications, but are adaptable and have not yet formed problematic habits. However, more training may be required compared to experienced.

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