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Teaching as a Second Act, or Maybe Even a Third

Teaching, with the draw of doing good, the steady (if unspectacular) paychecks, summers off and solid pension benefits, has long been perceived as a durable second — or third — career.

But in the last five years, the profession has taken a number of hits. The economic downturn led to layoffs across the country’s school districts. The total number of jobs in public schools remains about 345,000 below its 2008 peak, according to Labor Department figures.