In Why Online Education Works I wrote:
… the market for teachers will become more like the market for actors, a winner-take-all market with greater inequality and very big payments at the top…. Bigger markets support larger salaries, so the best teachers will earn much more in an online world.
Evidence for just how much some teachers could earn in the online world comes from Amanda Ripley writing in the WSJ about South Korea’s private education market:
Kim Ki-hoon earns $4 million a year in South Korea, where he is known as a rock-star teacher—a combination of words not typically heard in the rest of the world. Mr. Kim has been teaching for over 20 years, all of them in the country’s private, after-school tutoring academies, known as hagwons. Unlike most teachers across the globe, he is paid according to the demand for his skills—and he is in high demand.
…The bulk of Mr. Kim’s earnings come from the 150,000 kids who watch his lectures online each year. (Most are high-school students looking to boost their scores on South Korea’s version of the SAT.) He is a brand name, with all the overhead that such prominence in the market entails. He employs 30 people to help him manage his teaching empire and runs a publishing company to produce his books.