Teachers: Why do you teach?
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Despite poor conditions, what inspires you?
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Created September 10, 2012 by
Teachers: Why do you teach?

American historian and journalist Henry Brooks Adams once said, "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops."


Teachers are a life source for any education system. Yet in America, teachers are paid 14% less than other professionals in jobs requiring similar education levels. And teachers' salaries have steadily declined over 30 years, according to the New York Times.


Low pay, long hours and poor benefits have sparked strikes by teachers across the country. In 2011, teachers in Wisconsin fought for bargaining rights, and recently Chicago teachers started striking after failed talks over contract agreements.  Despite these factors, there are still people who are signing up to become teachers.


CNN iReport wants to hear from teachers: What inspires you to continue teaching? What frustrations do you face on the job? Share your personal stories and you could be featured in an upcoming CNN story.


Update: We profiled five teachers who've stayed in the profession despite various challenges. Read the story on CNN.com here.

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