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Teacher Salaries by State

teacher-teaching-young-studentsEvery few years the American Federation of Teachers releases a Teacher Salary Trends report about teacher salaries across the United States.  This information helps teachers decide where to teach and how much they should earn.  The latest report indicated that the average teacher salary was $47,602.  The Federation indicated that unfortunately, teachers are struggling to find housing in their areas that they can afford on their salaries.  As more teachers pursue additional education after receiving their bachelor’s degree, their student loan debt increases dramatically.  New teachers may not start at an average teacher salary and could therefore struggle even more than veteran teachers, who may have higher salaries.

In a profession with increasingly high turnover and recruiting issues, boosting the salaries of new teachers could help to increase the amount of time they spend with a particular school or school district. Additionally, wide discrepancies between teacher salaries from region to region also affect the likelihood that a qualified teacher will work for a school with low salaries. Some school districts offer high teacher salaries and great benefits, while others do not. With the rising price of gas and other inflation, teachers must make difficult choices when considering where to work. Again, the discrepancy in teacher salary from district to district can hinder the likelihood of retaining veteran teachers. Before accepting a position, teachers should research the salaries from district to district in their areas. Ask other teachers where they enjoy working and for a list of pros and cons of a particular school or school district.

The most recent report included a list of teacher salaries by state. The state with the highest average teacher salary was Connecticut, at $57,760. California was a very close second, where the average teacher salary is $57,604. New Jersey teachers make approximately $56,635 per year. Rounding out the top five were Illinois and Rhode Island, with the average teacher salary at $56,494 and $56,432, respectively. The state with the lowest average teacher salary was South Dakota, at $34,039.

According to CBSalary.com, the average teacher salary by city was as follows: Teacher Salaries by Location

  • Springfield, IL – $48,015
  • Chicago, IL – $53,713
  • Atlanta, GA – $35,903
  • Savannah, GA – $25,008
  • Orlando, FL – $31,684
  • Tampa, FL – $36,630
  • Miami, FL – $34,501

Teacher salary also varies according to education level of the teacher. A teacher with a four year bachelor’s degree may make less than a teacher with a master’s degree. The ranges for teacher salary in Chicago, IL vary from $37,372 to $89,620. This wide range obviously incorporates education level and experience of a multitude of teachers. Teacher salary also depends on what school level or subject teachers specialize in. A secondary school teacher may make more than a primary school teacher. In Chicago, a primary school teacher makes approximately $44,480. A secondary school teacher makes about $4,000 more, or $48,180. The average mathematics teacher makes $38,211, while the average science teacher makes $62,391. These teachers may make up to $52,977 or $87,946, respectively. A history teacher at the secondary level makes $38,256. The highest reported income for a history teacher in Chicago is $53,106. These wide ranges include teachers in public and private institutions at a variety of experience levels.

290 Responses for "Teacher Salaries by State"

  • saeed December 28th, 2007 at 3:07 pm 1

    solidworks teacher

  • Shirley December 29th, 2007 at 7:26 pm 2

    Hi I wouldn’t now if the recent you are talking about is 2007 or what year was it? I found no concluding date with this article. Please email me. I am making a research for ave sal and beg sal for Connecticut teachers. Thanks.

  • Jamie March 2nd, 2008 at 9:05 am 3

    How can I find a current list of average teacher salaries for every US state. I’m currently teaching in Maryland and we are not receiving raises, therefore I need to find low cost of living and decent salaries.

  • kesh April 24th, 2008 at 9:40 am 4

    crikey. you should all emigrate. teachers’ salaries average $70,000 in the uk

  • James May 6th, 2008 at 5:58 am 5

    Unfortunately, this entire article is a little off. Sure the average pay is that high…but that is including the pay of supervisors and principles that never even teach a student. The average pay for a teacher with a B.S. degree in Mississippi? Just over 20k, yet their average supervisor pay? Near 40-50k. Its all a cleverly designed myth” to avoid having tax payers ask for more money in education.

    Wake up America – your government has been at social war with you for decades.

  • tanasha May 13th, 2008 at 1:06 pm 6

    This was a great refrence thank you.

  • Kristina May 14th, 2008 at 5:00 pm 7

    I just looked at North Carolina’s teacher’s salary for 2007-2008 on their website and they had $58,000 (based off 31 years of experience) w/ just a Bachelor’s. $70,000 average in the UK?

  • Sheena July 24th, 2008 at 11:34 pm 8

    Assuming the school in which the teacher is employmed is not year round, how does he/she get paid during the summer? How is that worked into the contract?

  • Jim July 31st, 2008 at 7:54 pm 9

    I’m moving to the UK…….

  • Kerry Gray August 2nd, 2008 at 5:35 pm 10

    I can answer that……….your contract specifies a total number of school days that are worked. For example, just off the wall, you work 252 days which is the actual school year. You get paid ONLY for those 252 days saying that the salary for those days worked is $32,000.

    The $32,000 is then divided by 12 months which gives you salary during the summer when you are teaching. Some people say, you’re so lucky, you get paid during the summer for not working.

    Not the case. The case is you’re getting “less” salary during the months you work because it’s stretched to cover a full year. But I think it works out great.

  • Kerry Gray August 2nd, 2008 at 5:36 pm 11

    Oops, mistake in what I posted…….should say “……is then divided by 12 months which gives you salary during the summer when you are NOT teaching……..”

  • Tom findjobs August 7th, 2008 at 10:58 am 12

    The salaries vary from county to county. Sometimes even town to town. Generally they are very high in Fairfield County. As you move east and north they are less. But in comparing them to the majority of the country I think we have it pretty good here in Connecticut.

    I am in my 8th year with a Master’s degree and make around 65K. Although that won’t make me rich, I get close to a $5000 raise each year until step 13. Making 90 K in 5 years sounds pretty good to me to have summers off. I am happy with the salary scale.

  • Erik August 10th, 2008 at 11:27 am 13

    They use division. If you make 45,000 a year they divide that by 12. And thats how much you make each month.

  • Ann August 15th, 2008 at 7:59 pm 14

    I am entering my sixth year of teaching. I receive 59,600 per year. This is for 12months. THis is for 08 09 school. THis is in Calif. I was sur[rise to see how low some states pay.

  • Mike August 19th, 2008 at 3:39 pm 15

    It is avg over 12 months.

  • Kalin August 21st, 2008 at 7:34 pm 16

    The way a contract works with a teacher (at least in TN) is that you sign to either get paid for the time you are in school or you have the option to get paid weekly in the summer as well (this is the best option). Say you and your next door teacher both graduate college the same year, and you choose to get checks throughout the year and she chooses only the school year option. Your checks might be smaller than the teacher next door to you, but you would get checks in the summer and she wouldn’t.

  • Ralston August 26th, 2008 at 5:16 pm 17

    Summer school? 31 years? How could any teacher survive 31 years and teach summer school. . . and not have twitches, grey hair, twitches, and high blood pressure. NC has a base state pay plus a local supplement. Chapel Hill and Wake County (Raleigh) have the highest. Still, you’ll get 5 periods a day, duty during lunch and probably before or after school (no extra pay for that), and more headaches than a factory’s load of Tylenol (super strength) can handle. Are there no bankers? Lawyers? At least they get well paid for their ulcers.

  • Lisa August 27th, 2008 at 5:38 pm 18

    It is usually automatically spread over 12 months.

  • lollipop September 7th, 2008 at 2:15 pm 19

    i find that teaching is great help for students who take advantage of this because they make you feel good whether the pay isn’t but making progress in someone else’s life really makes the years in college worth while and my salary is 55,920 in south texas

  • bobo September 20th, 2008 at 2:14 pm 20

    please, we need all of you to emigrate.

  • oops September 30th, 2008 at 2:25 am 21

    Even SouthKorean teachers getting aver $40000/year

  • jana September 30th, 2008 at 11:42 am 22

    Don’t know where this data came from but I would love to be making 34K like in South Dakota! I teach high school in Louisiana and I make — hope you are sitting down— $26,500 per year! Unbelieveable isn’t it!

  • Tahir September 30th, 2008 at 12:05 pm 23

    I am broken up between majoring in math or physics. my ultimate goal is to teach one of the two. is there a difference in pay, specifically for NJ, and if so, aprox how much?

  • Tahir September 30th, 2008 at 12:08 pm 24

    also, if i got a bachelors in math, let’s say how would i go about teaching. i guess i would have to get certified or something…how exactly does that work without majoring in education? THNX

  • teacher October 1st, 2008 at 8:54 pm 25

    how much of salary is lost due to taxes? we make a lot in Canada (right now with 2 degrees and working vice principal, making over 80 000) – but probably half is lost to taxes, all told. Is it the same in the USA?

  • constantine October 8th, 2008 at 12:46 pm 26

    on long island the average salary is about $80,000 a year. and teaching over 10 years will boost you to and over $100,000 a year. i think a little over paid since teachers in schools that have much harder teaching environments just barely make half that.

  • blackbeauty October 11th, 2008 at 10:31 am 27

    Many of you are talking about salaries, what about unions. That is the real issue, if you have a union at least they will fight for you to receive an increase and your benefits. Long Island has a nice salary, but ask about some of their stipulations.

  • janice October 11th, 2008 at 10:07 pm 28

    Are there any other cities/board of eds in the country that are experiencing a rush of very young teachers. In chicago, 8-10 or more years veteran teachers are being pushed out of the system to make way for new teachers. School level or subject do not make any differnce. Salary is based on education and experience only. Lot of charters popping up under the unoin.

  • Rachelle a.k.a.: mission lady October 15th, 2008 at 12:31 pm 29

    I’m on a serious mission collegues! I teach and reside in Boise, Idaho. I have a BA in Marketing and teaching certificate with 20 extra Early Childhood components, but am most certainly NOT making this “AVERAGE” teaching salary amount that’s posted! We do have a Union, but our voices are still not being heard where it really counts; to those who continue making these regulations for us but haven’t stepped foot in a classroom in years! I make $31,000 a year. Not bad, but I’m a single mother and have almost $1,000 out of my check each month….needless to say I work for benefits and also have a second job at night. This week alone I pawn my daughter off three nights in a row right after school to cocktail and serve. Hit the bed around 12:30 and rise at 5:30 to do it all over again! Mind you, I did not start at this pay. It was $26,000 and I’ve had to take extra classes for credit (that I paid for to move over on the pay scale to get more each month.) Sooo…back to my mission….. I’m collect input from every state…beginnnig salaries, administrator salaries, how many “classified” are in your school to help pull kids or in the classroom, aids, last raise, what your School District has done for your school lately, what your state department of ed. has done for your state lately, are there actual representatives of your state department that have even BEEN a teacher, do they help with professional development, what’s your pay scale consist of and how many credits before you can move over….you know, for them to tell us what we are worth, yet again.??? Help! I’m taking it all! Mission in Idaho!

  • PerryPanther07 October 20th, 2008 at 8:21 am 30

    You have all made excellent points. Just as with politics, the statistics can be made to lie. The salaries stated for educators ALWAYS include administrators and other higher paid employees.

    As a high school administrator, in one of the best school systems in Georgia, I make $65K/year with 15 years experience. I am on a 220 day contract and usually work from 6 am to whenever the last sporting event is completed on campus and within 100 miles of the school (Usually home by 11 on game days).

    It has been frustrating for me to place more and more pressure on my teachers to perform for less than 1% COLAs every year. I cannot in good conscience ask them fro more than they are already doing to help our kids without losing many of the younger teachers to attrition.

    I have long been an opponent of NLCB and with the stress my wife has been under as a 5th grade teacher I am even more firm in my opposition to it. Save education; Save our Teachers!!!

  • Brad – Not my real name October 20th, 2008 at 2:39 pm 31

    I’m not a teacher and I don’t mean to sound mean or condescending but why do teachers stay in a profession that doesn’t pay a fair wage. For years I’ve heard teachers talking about the inconsistencies in wages between teachers in other states and teachers and the administration. I’m not a teacher (I’m an engineer) so I have a hard time understanding. I am on the outside looking in but have done some substitute teaching. I can say that some teachers earn everything they get paid and deserve more while some teachers really should look into another profession. With that bit of background information again I ask why teachers stay in a profession that pays so poorly?

  • Ryan October 21st, 2008 at 5:48 am 32

    Brad, there are a few reasons why teachers stay teachers. first, we love making a difference in kids lives. We an truly have an impact at a young age. Second, teachers have summers off and we get holidays off so we can spend time with our families. We also have decent health care depending on the district you are with. I can’t speak for all districts out there but my district pays pretty well and as a family with 2 kids we are doing fine financially.


  • Rachelle a.k.a.: mission lady October 23rd, 2008 at 3:43 pm 33

    Brad, I don’t believe you were being mean or rude, your question is legit! However, as you stated yourself, “you do not know”. This, unfortunately, goes for many in our society today. This is my persepective. I spent five years to receive a Business degree and then realized my passion was with children. I chose to return and get my teaching certificate, but outside factors made this road way longer than anticipated. Needless to say my time in the required schooling and monies I spent to become a teacher is hard to just walk away from because of my love for children. Each morning when my class enters my room, I am not only responsible to “educate” them by the state standards and curriculum, I have now become a body guard, nurse, doctor, therapist, life skills and manners coach and in some cases a step-parent. Firedrills, lock-downs, evacuations, epi pens, cpr, crisis team are also part of our trainings. (Billy: not real name) One May morning I was met at the office by a Billy’s new Foster parent and Health and Welfare. Billy had finally returned to school after an episode the week before of “chicken pox”. Billy really returned after his father was arrested for beating Billy so badly with a belt on his back and buttocks he couldn’t move. He was not sent to school for fear WE would find out. Well, someone had previously. How long had Billy been living this way and hiding it? It wasn’t in his writings. Billy wasn’t at his grade level academically, but he knew he was in a safe haven, consistent accountability, warm meals, hugs and laughter. Do you honestly think Billy cared at all what he got on that test that day? Speaking of NCLB?!!! Billy knew he would be sent home again at the end of the day! Billy was seven years old!! Unfortunately, Ryan, your comment about summers and Holidays off are part of why teachers do get such a bad wrap. Those are fighting words for me when people comment on that. I am a single parent of two! I work another job because my salary doesn’t cut it. I work on Holidays and all summer long. Along with paying for and educating myself more by taking classes to move over on the payscale of my career! I also don’t have aids to help in the room and take my work home constantly. Bottom line…it’s absolutely disheartening that we value our educator’s so little when in fact they are helping form little minds to be that surgeon or pilot for your family someday!

  • Ms. Nitikia Forde October 26th, 2008 at 10:23 am 34

    Well colleagues, I am embarking on a journey as a Childhood Special Education Teacher and I am looking for the best place to start my teaching career. When i say the best place i mean in terms of opportunities and meeting new people who have the same philosophy that I have which is that “every child can learn” and that as teachers we have to do everything that we can do to make sure that they do learn. I also want a change from the environment i live in and I’m looking at places like connecticut and new jersey etc. Viewing this site has provided me with many oppportunities and i look forward to learning more…thanks..
    A teacher to Heart…

  • David Swift November 17th, 2008 at 12:48 am 35

    Teahers will always be under paid in the USA. Government control causes the problems in all public schools. Plus paying to many poor adminstrators 85k in Alaska for doing very little and they only need 3 years as a teacher and a masters to become leaders in Education. This makes for very poor leaders which results in poor schools.Like all states Alaska has to many poor leaders and very poor schools.

  • mark November 20th, 2008 at 7:10 am 36

    not here in michigan when a teacher makes $448 a day and that is for 10 months not including the district paying for there benefits

  • llou November 23rd, 2008 at 9:13 pm 37

    I live in California in the S.F. Bay Area. I make 78000 a year. I work 188 days (paid anyway). I’m in my twelfth year. Sounds good?? It costs an average of $600000 to buy a cracker box, 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with 1100 square feet. 78000 doesn’t go very far when you have a $3200 house payment. It’s all relative to the cost-of-living.

  • Panamabound November 30th, 2008 at 2:45 am 38

    Teachers make out big time. Look at the lady above …..9 months of work at $8666 a month. If teachers want to make more money, then they can be on committees.

    I used to do teacher retirement plans and I saw HUNDREDS of paystubs. How about a “reading specialist” in 1997 making $92000? How about an “earth science high school teacher making $100,000 in 2000? These salaries are for 9 months of work.

    Give me a break. Teachers have the country by the balls and it is because of the TEACHERS’ unions. They are massive. Look at the schools. The schools are ugly war zones. The teachers ALSO GET full medical, dental, and so forth. They have to (state law in California) put 8% of their salary into the retirement system, but GUESS WHAT- the state matches that 100%-who else do you know in any company that gets a 100% match up to 8% of their salary? Nobody excetp the carmakers and they are going out of business. Never forget either I mention again, that this is for 9 months of work.

    All my life I have been in situations where I have to listen to the teachers constantly whining about how they think they don’t make enough money. I think they should all be reprimanded as being unappreciative, uninformed about the rest of the people’s salaries ….they have no clue about how good they have it.

  • Richard December 2nd, 2008 at 6:38 pm 39

    I worked for 30 years as a high school special education teacher, have a BA and a MS. My last year I just broke the $50000 mark(gross not net).For much of the first 10 years I was eligible for food stamps (family of five) and other programs for those below certain income criteria. I loved the challenge of the job, loved making a difference and enjoyed the school atmosphere. Always worked summer jobs to get by. Never thought I was overpaid, however.

  • Beverly December 2nd, 2008 at 8:48 pm 40

    I don’t know why you think teachers have it made. I have been teaching for 5 years and make $41,000 a year at one of the highest paying school districts in Arkansas. And I certainly don’t have full benefits. It would be $787 a month to have insurance on myself, my husband, and daughter. And that doesn’t include any dental, vision, or additional coverage except a $5000 life policy. They just passed a law in 2006 that finally gave teachers here lunch breaks. Until then the law actually said that we only had to be given lunch breaks 80% of the time. I think the teachers unions are a good thing or we still wouldn’t have what every everyone else has a legal right to – a chance to each lunch.

  • Julie Lopez December 3rd, 2008 at 2:14 pm 41

    Im a single mother of three with little help from the unemployed father. How can I become a teacher with just 1 year of community college under my belt.I need to support my family. I would appreciate some suggestions on how to get stared?

  • Ben December 3rd, 2008 at 3:19 pm 42

    After reading some of the comments I must post my two cents. I am a first year teacher in the Mississippi Delta. I am from the state and understand a little of what goes on. I did not go into teaching for the money, however I do feel like I should complain when I make so little yet am held accountable for little Johnny’s grades when he is yet to bring a pencil to class. If I am going to put my reputaion as a professional out on the line I would like to be duly compensated for it. As far as the pay goes; Here I make base 31,900. I believe that this 1k above the state base. I also coach and recieve no restituion. I have been punched twice this year breaking up fights. I don’t know where everyone is getting this free dental and health insurance, because in mississippi we must pay for dental, and have a large deductible on our health coverage. I take work home with me at night, can’t sleep because my administration thought it would be funny to put me in a SATP class(US history). I am currently looking to relocate, because I teach in a school of 1,100, have 5 SR officers, and one of the most dangerous gang infested areas in the state. I just had to get a few things off my chest, because im sorry, my 848.63 is not enough for what I do.

  • Ben December 3rd, 2008 at 3:23 pm 43

    …and that 848.63 is every two weeks….throw 350 in rent, 150 in utilities, car payment, insurance, groceries, student loans, and dr/meds what are you left with. I don’t care where you live and how you want to say “Pay is reflective in the cost of living” teachers dont get paid enough. I like to think of myself as modest and somewhat frugal, but 1600 a month bring home? THANK BAJEESUS I don’t have a family!

  • Ann December 3rd, 2008 at 4:34 pm 44

    Teachers don’t just work 9 months out of the year. Lots of states go mid-August through June. Plus, as a professional, a teacher is expected to prepare classes, crunch student assessment data, write grants for classroom/school funding, investigate new curriculum, cross-curricular opportunities, and technology, as well as keep abreast of brain research, at a minimum. When school is in session, a teacher must work at least 55 hours per week if she actually wants to provide sufficient student feedback (grade, record, turn back), so all of the above happens during that alleged 3 month break.

  • Lesia December 4th, 2008 at 6:04 pm 45

    I just read all the replys and I really don’t know what to say. I am a nurse in the military right now. I am about to retire and I have my master’s in education. I really want to teach, because it is my second love, first being patient care. Some of the reply’s actually scares me. But when I think about it. Just like nursing, you really shouldn’t go into that career field for the money. You should like what you do, and make the best of it as much as you can. I just want to say I really salute all the teachers in the world. You guys do an outstanding job day in and day out.

  • terry December 9th, 2008 at 12:26 pm 46

    Hey the reply talking about how much they make in Michigan. Sad part about that is most kids who graduate from some michigan schools can neither read properly or spell. They only know how to sound spell. I am from Arkansas and live in Michigan now. Arkansas teachers are the lowest paid teachers but at least my kids could read and spell when they graduated. I have step-kids that graduated from a Michigan school that can’t even help there 1st grade kids cause they don’t know how. So much for higher paid teachers.

  • Marisa December 10th, 2008 at 6:58 pm 47

    That’s nice. Let’s just make sweeping generalizations about every person that has ever come out of Michigan’s school system.

  • drew December 11th, 2008 at 9:26 am 48

    I’m not a teacher but my wife and a few of my friends are teachers. I hear some of the horror stories about kids and their parents. I wouldn’t want to be teacher because I’d end up losing my cool and getting fired.
    Today’s teachers have a tougher curriculum to teach and their work day doesn’t end when they leave the school as most people think. Many good teachers spend 2 hours or more at home doing work after school. Teachers deserve every cent they get and then some.

  • terry December 11th, 2008 at 5:13 pm 49

    Geee I didn’t know “most kids” was making a sweeping generalization about everyone coming out of Michigan schools. My bad.

  • AL December 13th, 2008 at 8:55 am 50

    I have been teaching in SC for over 20 years now. It is indecent the way we are treated, least in my district. We spend hours doing useless, detailed lesson plans that never seem to please the powers that be. They ride us on everything, teaching has no longer been a priority, it is meetings after meeting, and forms beyond what you would understand. I spend hours everyday filling out paperwork and I never have time to prepare for my classes the way I would like. To top that off, our District office has over spent on themselves so now they are trying to run off our best teachers to cut salary expenses. We are now told what to teach, how to teach it and even when to teach it. We have very little control over what we teach. We aren’t even allowed to teach anything that is not in the standards, which is a huge injustice to the students. The district office thinks we have to constantly be watched to make sure we are teaching correctly. The problem is they were all terrible teachers and wouldn’t know good teaching if they saw it. We also haven’t had a raise from the district in 10 years. And we do spend hours at home doing work and we have to work some during the summer. So I would so not recommend anyone teaching here in SC. I hate to say that but it just isn’t worth the stress and what it does to your life.

  • mel December 13th, 2008 at 9:10 am 51

    I am actually UK teacher trying to move to US. With regards to UK teachers being highly paid I would say not. New teacher salary is currently less than £18k sterling, the most pay increase you get for first 5 years is under £500 and not compulsory as you are earning more than the UK minimum wage. You have to work 5 years to get on a higher pay scale, £23k or more, and many schools expect these 5 years to be in a UK school due to the rigid curriculum. You have this to deal with constantly eg. UK Govt says you MUST do 1 hr of literacy every morning. This MUST be divided into 15 mins start on carpet, 30 mins main activity, 15 mins plenary to end. The same applies to maths, science etc. The average primary teacher works around 60-70hrs a week according to Govt website, hours are even longer for secondary teachers. I’m nopt saying Im coming to US for an easy break, because I believe teaching is a vocation, not a career, and you can only succeed if you love it. Just a warning that UK teaching is probably comparable in terms of wages and teaching circumstances, not better.

  • TeTe December 14th, 2008 at 10:22 pm 52

    Hey Terry. I hope it’s not grammar which you teach/taught (it’s neither/nor or either/or; NOT neither/or).

  • Christy December 17th, 2008 at 9:56 am 53

    I have taught in Georgia for over 13 years, and the situation here is almost identical to what AL in South Carolina described. Meetings, meetings, meetings, paperwork, paperwork, paperwork, kids coming to school with no supplies, not completing their work, or they are too sick/hungry/tired to learn. There is no accountability for the families whatsoever. The PTA is typically comprised more of administrators and teachers than parents (and yes, we are expected to pay PTA dues!). A huge chunk of the budget is used for ESOL instruction for students who aren’t even here legally. Administrators and county officials who can’t even be bothered to return phone calls or emails make way more than us. Over the years the amount we are expected to teach children to mastery has increased exponentially, yet the length of the school day and year has remained the same, while the kids’ attention span has dramatically decreased. Computers are outdated and crash. All of this has to do with the fact that the school systems are run by the government. If they were to be turned over to the private sector and there was a profit motive involved, you can bet we would see competitive salaries and top-of-the-line equipment. Don’t say it can’t be done- we are in charge of providing the intellectual capitol for America’s economic future- why can’t the big businesses help to provide corporate sponsorship? In the long run, it’s for their best interest.

  • Adam December 17th, 2008 at 10:36 am 54

    check out the Sarasota and Manatee County Schools in Florida. They were hiring teachers.

  • Teachme December 18th, 2008 at 11:24 am 55


    It IS a sweeping generalization and you ARE a **********.

  • terry December 19th, 2008 at 11:45 am 56

    Hey everyone is entitled to their opinion and the people I have met up here are just as I have stated. Even people with high paying jobs. So excuse me if I have offened anyone by stating the truth as I have seen it. And it shows your caliber of speech since you have to stoop to symbols for words.

  • Chris December 19th, 2008 at 7:18 pm 57


    Being able to recite the NASCAR line-up is not reading, sorry. Maybe load up the double-wide and move back to Arkansas, eh?

  • jake December 20th, 2008 at 8:26 am 58

    i mean really what is the purpose of this chat line….i mean can this really help my stress….i am so sick og being turned down by jobs…or having to drive basically to the suburbs for work…..normally theres no bus line and being african american..you just simply dont have the means of transportation because they wont give us any jobs…

  • Cara December 21st, 2008 at 1:11 pm 59

    Terry, you might want to learn the difference between “their” and “there”. Also, learn what makes a complete sentence.

  • terry December 26th, 2008 at 4:10 pm 60

    Hey, I never said I taught school anywhere and I sure don’t know the Nascar line-up. And you should go to Arkansas and check out some of the houses and double-wides before you bad mouth them. At least they are worth want they sell for. My step-daughter calls her home up here a cardboard mansion.

  • tobian December 27th, 2008 at 5:43 pm 61

    I must say first that I am a 31 year old male who has just found his “calling”. I will teach. I am thinking that I want to teach history. Truthfully, teachers really don’t make much when you consider everything they have to deal with. On the flip side, i do think that most teachers knew that when they signed up to teach! If you are given to profit and consumerism, my advice is to pick another vocation. If you love to share knowledge and inspire people…then teaching has to be the only option. It is painfully obvious that the antiquated models of yester years are not working and they probably never really did. I think that the educational system has missed its mark. It has failed to identify student strengths and weaknesses. It has failed to identify teachers that are not getting their jobs done, and they have failed to reward those of you (teachers) who have gone above and beyond the call of duty. I have a very lucrative small business and have manage to save a small sum. My life is no longer driven by gain. I will honestly be able to tell my students that i am there for them and not just because my job is “easy”. If teaching is “work” for you, pick another field!!. Truthfully, if you picked any vocation for the money, you picked wrong i think. Anyway, that’s my 2 cents worth. Oh yeah, if you’re uncool, these kids won’t listen to you! I wear Air Jordans and listen to the rap music of today. I have smoked weed in my day, been drunk off my ass, and arrested too! In other words, I am “real”. I do think that I can relate to them. I am really only interested in teaching in the youth correctional facilities, or maybe the alternative schools. They pay more, and I think that the gratification is exponentially more than in the traditional schools. Peace.

  • Vanessa January 1st, 2009 at 4:03 pm 62

    Tobian…Thank you for that last comment! My goal is to have my degree in three years and become a teacher as well. Even though in three years I will be making more at my job now than I will as I teacher I still want to do it and it is because I know its my passion. I might kick myself in the butt once I start comparing paychecks but I know I will at least go to work every morning excited and happy that I am getting paid to do something I love. Not very many people love their job, sure they may be making five times what teachers make but at the end of the day they still are not happy. I help out at schools now and truth is there are many teachers who do not know how to be “real” and relate to the kids and that is why they complain so much when the students “act up”. We need more teachers like Tobian who still understand what it’s like to be at that age and instead of being so critical all the time, be understanding and become their friend. Its sad that teachers do not get paid more for what they do but it is more sad if you are not a teacher for simply the love for the students.

  • Rich January 3rd, 2009 at 3:52 pm 63

    I have to say I am happy that I have come across this site. I have gained a lot of knowledge by reading everyone’s’ opinions on the subject matter. I believe what is really important is the fact that you’re doing something that you love to do, regardless of the pay. True, you should be compensated for your hard work and efforts, but let the pay be last in what you look for. I am currently pursuing my educational certification so that I may teach history and political science. I have worked in job fields where my salary was 42k+ a year, but its not what I wanted to do. So I encourage all of you that are teaching because you want to and you love having that impact on the youth, to continue to do so, because we are a rare commodity. Good luck to you all.

  • sara January 4th, 2009 at 7:49 pm 64

    to jake- I can’t believe being African American you can’t find a job. Come to NY- I taught in an urban school last year in the Capital Region. I lost my job to an African American because we did not have enough A.A. teachers/ administrators in the district. The district has made it blatantly clear through their hiring the past few years that their intent is to hire African Americans. (qualified or not).
    To Tobian- and any other newbies and want-to-be teachers- make sure you get your SPED degree if you want a job- esp if you want to teach social studies or ELA. There ARE NOT jobs out there in these areas- not in upstate NY anyway. However schools are dying to find SPED teachers. That’s one piece of advice I wish I had not ignored. Even if you don’t want to teach it- it’s at least a foot in the door.

  • Ratna Baichwal January 6th, 2009 at 3:46 pm 65

    Great advice I am of East-Indian descent and living in the great country of Canada. Never encountered any racism in hiring practices here. However I am sure it exists to some extent.

    Great advice and love this site.

    I myself am a researcher and freelance writer/editor. Does anyone out there know of any internet research jobs or freelance writing jobs out there. Either Canada or U.S. ?

    Would appreciate any response.



  • faheem majeed January 7th, 2009 at 10:37 am 66

    Maybe the racism it too subtle for you to see it, I would suggest that you start reading some history of how the Indians were virtually wiped out in Canada and the Americas, and then come up to date.

  • Karen January 8th, 2009 at 9:59 pm 67

    I’m a special ed teacher in California/San Francisco Bay Area (11 years )…I make $106,000, which after reading these posts sounds like a lot; however, due to the cost of living it is not! Teachers should get paid much more than they do. I cannot afford a house even on this salary.
    God bless all of you, I feel fortunate that I’m at least getting a descent wage.

  • Kelli January 9th, 2009 at 12:49 pm 68

    Faheem Majeed, Ratna did not say there was no racism. She only said she had not encountered itm. None of us should. Where are you from, Faheed, what is your lineage? Where do your PEOPLE come from?

  • Sadaf January 9th, 2009 at 1:52 pm 69

    Kelli, I can understand you not taking too well to faheems comment as it comes off rude at first, but being a muslim(not even a practicing one at that), american-pakistani, I have encountered racism not only in general but also with the work place as well as during job interviews after they realize that i am not Latino but pakistani. Im sure you havent experienced racism yourself So please try and refrain from your prejudices and racist statements by making sarcastic remarks as to where someones LINEAGE lies along with where someones PEOPLE come from. After your comment Faheems comment which may have resulted from dealing with racism doesn’t appear HALF as rude as yours.

  • Sue January 9th, 2009 at 3:18 pm 70

    Average teacher salaries by state can be very misleading. They would include the higher paid inner city teachers and I’m not sure if administrators’ salaries would also be included, but those are MUCH higher than the classroom teachers’ pay. It would be more meaningful to see average teacher salaries by district, IF they only included classroom teachers and were sure to exclude the salaries of administrators. Does anybody know of a website with that kind of information?

  • Ben January 11th, 2009 at 1:28 pm 71

    If you really want to see what you would make as a teacher just go to the Department of Education’s website in the state where you live. They will have a breakdown of yearly payscales based on education level, experience, etc. To even be more specific, you can go to district websites and they also may have information there. By looking to averages for how much you will make is misleading. If you are going into this field, or looking to go into this field expecting to get rich, I suggest you do something else. However, it is very rewarding I must say.

  • SueZ January 13th, 2009 at 3:50 pm 72

    My hubby has been teaching Science for 19 years in So. Calif. public school. He has a Master’s in Biology plus 75 units towards his doctorate. He makes 90k a year. He runs programs in science advancement all throughout the year, day and night without extra pay. I think he earns every penny and then some and they are d@mn lucky to have him.

  • pregnant republican January 14th, 2009 at 12:07 pm 73

    First off, i think that teachers are great teachers until there tenur then most of them suck and they dont [care] about anything because they are protected by the school.

  • galaxina January 17th, 2009 at 9:05 am 74

    > until there tenure < ???

    until THEIR tenure:

    “THERE” denotes “in or at that place, as opposed to ‘here’.

    “THEIR” denotes a form of the possessive case of THEY used as an attributive adjective, before a noun. Example: their home; their rights as citizens.

    How ironic.

  • Jacob January 17th, 2009 at 8:38 pm 75

    There are some great points being made here. One thing I don’t see people considering is cost of living vs. wage. I’m a special ed teacher in California (intern) and make approximately 34k a year. Once I’m credentialed that will jump to about 50k and I’ll top out at about 84k in 12 years. However, many people don’t realize that here in CA we don’t have an option for an “education degree”. We get a BA/BS in whatever and then have 2 more years of full time school to become fully credentialed. Therefore, in almost any state CA teachers make more due to our post BA/BS units..

    Anyway, back to my point: Cost of living. Yes, some states pay teachers less than others, but what does a house cost there?

    Here in CA, even a teacher who is making 80k a year can’t secure a mortgage for a house in any decent area (I mean decent as in remotely livable). However, in say Texas one could buy a decent house for under 100k, so making even 30k a year you could at least afford a home!

  • wiser than you January 18th, 2009 at 11:08 am 76

    I would advise you to use proper grammar, word choice, and punctuation before criticizing anyone in print. Your teachers must have, as you say, sucked.

  • Ben January 19th, 2009 at 5:25 pm 77

    Dear Pregnant Republican,

    Are you a teacher? Do you have tenure? (note the spelling). You are focusing your hostility towards the wrong folks, I bet it bothers you that we have a welfare system as well. Aren’t we in the middle of a 700 billion dollar bailout for people who have done nothing but lie to us for almost a decade? Good work on frying the smallest fish possible. You should be grateful that this country has an extremely dedicated (and underpaid)education force, that rarely, if ever, gets the praise it deserves. If anything it gets rather ignorant messages like yours.


  • kd January 20th, 2009 at 1:30 pm 78

    This article is not that accurate at all. Who ever did their research must have pulled numbers out of a hat because the starting pay for teachers in Miami is at least 38,000- 39,000 not 34,000. A teacher would not work in miami for 34,000 he/she would be crying themselves to sleep at night. Also Broward County pays more than miami. Starting pay is about 40,000. So the South Floridans are actually doing well.

    But remember a salary also has to go with your cost of living. So if you live in NY your salary mght be 100,000 but it costs that much to live there. Same thing with the UK and other states.

  • Denise January 21st, 2009 at 12:39 pm 79

    “Pregnant republican” simply voiced her opinion. That her thoughts are not supported by actual facts and only by anecdotal experience is typical of the type of thinking that continues to divide our country politically and publically. I find it interesting that “pregnant” seems to have neglected to educate herself and now wants to blame the system.

  • carmen January 22nd, 2009 at 7:44 pm 80

    Please help! I am living in Miami, FL and I will receive my bachelors degree in elementary education this year. What states offer the best salary for beginning teachers? I want to be as close to Florida as possible. Thank you.

  • Shaundrika January 23rd, 2009 at 10:29 am 81

    Hello everyone!! I live in Atlanta, Ga but I’m looking to relocate to another state because things are a little hectic and competitive here and most of the school systems are doing hiring freezes for the upcoming yr. I am looking for some information on teacher salaries in GA’s surrounding states. I am currently looking into Florida for right now and have submitted my resume to the Duval Co. School System. But I’m not sure what the starting salary is for Florida’s schools? And I am open to any other comments and info on other states as well like TN, NC, SC, VA, TX etc… but I kinda want to live in the major cities of those states. I am 23 yrs old and I dont have any teaching experience other than substituting for a few months. I have a Bachelors in Sociology and I just recently graduated with my Masters in Education. PLEASE HELP!!!

  • johnny232 January 26th, 2009 at 8:53 pm 82

    I teach in a district, when I last checked, was the highest paid in the state (SC). The state has made millions of dollars in budget cuts. Next year we will not have any aids or a school nurse. They have also frozen any new hires. I will not receive my raise next year. Also, they are not going to give nationaly certified teachers their bonus, as they promised. From what I hear, the whole state is facing the same. However, like many others on this page. I can’t leave because I love it too much. From what I have hear FL is your best bet if your looking for money.

  • scteacher January 27th, 2009 at 11:35 am 83

    Johnny, I also teach in SC and have National Board certification. Your district cannot opt out of paying the stipend to its certified teachers. That is paid by the state. They have reviewed the past policy of loaning the application costs, and that will most likely not be done anymore.
    Our district’s salaries are frozen, also. As far as I know, new hires are not, though. But you will move up on the pay scale because of your years of experience.
    I agree with your advice to Shaundrika. If you are looking to make decent money, FL would be much better than SC. I’m not sure if all states/districts calculate salary the same way, but here, you would be on a Master’s Degree level, but with 0 years of experience. In my district, that would be about $36,000/year. I’m not sure which district Johnny teaches in, but if it’s the one I’ve always heard to be the highest paying, your base would be about $39,500. It looks like in Broward county (the first FL county that came to mind), you would make about $42,500. Hope that helps some. You can google any county’s teacher salary schedule, as far as I know, so happy googling! 🙂
    Oh, and as someone else mentioned, be sure to check the cost of living index for the area, as well, and compare them. You can google that, too!

  • lalalala January 30th, 2009 at 3:07 pm 84

    So i have read almost every comment here and by the looks of it some of you are not very dedicated to what you do,or dont like it very much. Some of you have started arguments over the most ridiculouse things. Is that the example you set for your students? If so dont’ expect anything much better from them. You guys complain about salary and gang fights and bla bla bla…well its partly your fault. Instead complaining why dont you do somthing about it…”ow but adminstration wont listen to me” then take it into your own hands. EVERYONE knows teachers dont get paid what they are worth ,so dont act like it was a big surprise. boohoo get over. it could be worst.
    If you dont love it dont do it its as simple as that. But dont complain about it because you made the choice to become a teacher all by yourself…and if you were swayed into doing it by someone else then your an idoit. teaching requieres love dedication and patience. most of which most of you dont have. Quit your bitching and solve your problems rather than complaining about it. OW by the way for any of you smartasses that are going to correct my gramatical errors or yet again complain im a highschool student. Your number one critic. your students are what you make them. show them fear anger or fustration and they will take full advantage of it regardless of what the consequences will be.

  • Texas February 17th, 2009 at 8:48 pm 85

    I’ve decided I want to become a principal in an elementary school in Texas. I feel very passionate about it. I have a bachelors in social work and am currently checking out what I need to do to start teaching. I also have an appointment with an academic advisor for my graduate work. Basically I would like to hear anything and everything about the work of a principal. Please help. As far as everyone being underpaid, coming from the social work field I very much understand. Thank you for all you do.

  • SHAWN AND SHAWNNAS MAMA LOVIN DA BIG EASY! February 20th, 2009 at 12:57 pm 86


  • Jennifer February 20th, 2009 at 2:11 pm 87

    Good luck on becoming a principal. I am going to school part time to become a special education teacher. This is what I always wanted to do. I love special needs children, youth, and adults.

  • redneckphd February 20th, 2009 at 10:04 pm 88

    First year teacher salary in HEB ISD near Fort Worth, Texas is 47500. Cost of living is not bad. The whole Fort Worth side of the DFW Metroplex is affordable. There are good schools where you can teach and not just police. I am a principal and hire teachers every year outside of FW. Suburban districts pay a little less, but turnover is not near as high as FW, Dallas or Arlington.

  • redneckphd February 20th, 2009 at 10:11 pm 89

    Hey Texas,
    To be a principal you must have at least two years of teaching experience. In most schools, you become an assistant principal first and then can be given a principalship.
    Since you already have a bachelor’s degree, you can find an alternative certification program. Within a few months, you can have the training required to start teaching if you can find a job. You then teach a year on a probationary certificate. While getting your teaching down, go to school at night and work on your master’s in educational administration. Then you must take a state test and get hired.
    It’s a great job. Some days are tough, but I love it.

  • D March 6th, 2009 at 8:40 pm 90

    I love my job and did not become a teacher for the money. But I would love to know what school district on Long Island pays $80,000. I have been teaching for 7 years and don’t make close to that. With a $3000 mtg payment,$400 for oil and $200 for electric a month I would love to make that much!

  • Gregory S. Wilson March 17th, 2009 at 10:19 pm 91

    After reading all these comments, I think I have been completely dissuaded from pursuing a teaching career.

    I know where I went to high school, starting pay for a teacher is 32,000 dollars a year, which I consider hardly enough to live on.

    The NH state average starting ( for a teacher ) is 30,000, which I would say is a slap in the face to anyone who has a bachelors, and is qualified to teach.

    Heck, I have a friend who started off making 38,000 with a GED, and having passed his Series 7, working for an investment firm.

    I know they say you should go into the field of teaching because you love it, and want to make a difference, but honestly..
    These salaries are just a slap in the face.

    I guess I’ll have to start thinking about other options.

  • maureen March 22nd, 2009 at 9:24 am 92

    Not only is the pay a slap in the many slaps.
    You do what is right for the child or you tell the truth and you get the blame for whatever doesn’t happen the way the A and the P want. The summer off is the only reason to be a teacher. And you get to hear “what a saint you are to put up with these kids today” It’s nice to have health insurance during this employment but now it is being discussed about lowering these benefits

    If want to teach, try subbing for a while and you will be convinced.

  • maureen March 22nd, 2009 at 9:35 am 93

    Not only is the pay a slap in the face but the administrators and parents add many more slaps.
    You do what is right for the child or you tell the truth and you get the blame for whatever doesn’t happen the way the A and the P want. The summer off is the only reason to be a teacher. And you get to hear “what a saint you are to put up with these kids today” It’s nice to have health insurance during this employment but now it is being discussed about lowering these benefits

    If you want to teach, try subbing for a while and you will be convinced.

  • maureen March 22nd, 2009 at 9:46 am 94

    Also, the comment “It will be different when I have my own classroom” You will spend atleast 5 years thinking you are making a difference and then you will begin the process of being slowly disillusioned about why you want to see the ‘lightbulb go on’. If you want the feeling, teach your own children or volunteer in school situations where you can leave if you are not appreciated.

  • jussme April 1st, 2009 at 10:05 pm 95

    I am not a teacher. I am currently a college student and my planned major is business management. I just wanted to say that I loved my teachers. I am from South Dakota and a very small school. Most of my teachers have been at my school for well over 10 years. The teachers may not get paid real well, but they made me the person I am today. They made me work my butt off in order to become a better person. For all you teachers out there… you rock, thanks =)

  • jussme April 1st, 2009 at 10:07 pm 96

    Oh, and even though I enjoy constructiv criticism, please do not reply back to me tellin me I have a typo. My laptop computer keyboard sucks, and I probably won’t care. Thanks (I meant all of this in the kindest way possible)

  • Diane April 2nd, 2009 at 10:11 am 97

    I have read all the the above posts. The incorrect spelling is automatically underlined. So why was there so much misspelling? The grammar was atrocious. Aside from that, parents need to be involved in the education of their children. I am not sure how this is to be accomplished, but, it should be done by the administration or the PTA(Parent Teacher Assoc., or whatever it is called). A campaign to involve the parents might be effective. Children need the basic 3 Rs, Reading comprehension so that they can understand a loan agreement for a car. Writing, so they can write coherently on the internet. Arithmetic, so they can balance a check book, and can make change. I have purchased a .60 item from a bake sale, given the high school cheerleader $1.10 and they couldn’t figure out how to give me change. Why was this student a cheerleader? Few people who do not have a checking account have a savings account. This is not a new phenomenon. When I was in high school (I am 60)there were 2 students that I administered tests, I had to read them the questions and write the answers for them, because they couldn’t. I call it passing the buck. You can turn out even a small percentage of these undereducated students and a lot of adults consider the system broken. I think it is broken and not just by the teachers. The administration and the parents must share part of the burden. Those school systems that have unions CAN do something about the situation, instead of just wanting pay raises. I feel the same way about coal miners who continuously ask for pay raises without address their safety issues.
    That is my 2 cents worth.

  • LindaG April 4th, 2009 at 6:56 am 98

    Yeah, umm Diane… GET A LIFE. or find a blog that cares. This is NOT THAT FORUM.

  • Stamie April 5th, 2009 at 1:26 pm 99

    I agree with Diane on the premise that the American Education system is at best below average.

    But, we need to delve a bit father into your “terrible” pay scale. The part all of you are conveniently leaving out is benefits. Let us start with that little thing called a pension. How much any of you contributed, from your personal checking accounts, to the pension? Let me help you with math – $0. Yes, that’s called free money, and more that 80% of you qualify, in fact most states only require 5 years to become vested and as a kicker, it is 100% transferable to other states. Allow me to count the other industries that have a pension any more? I’ll go with “none” and add a 99% accuracy disclaimer. As many of us in the other industries can attest to, that option died in the 1990’s, accept for teachers. And we didn’t get to keep the pension, it was sold out from under our feet.

    Now let’s go to healthcare, I make good money in IT and I have to pay 70% of my HMO. How much does the average teacher pay? According to the government reports (http://www.cga.ct.gov/2000/rpt/olr/htm/2000-R-1110.htm) you get it for an average state fee of 13%. Now for the real 911, it is not a basic HMO product. Many of my friends are spouses of Teachers and flat refuse the healthcare benefits because they are covered by their spouse’s teacher benefits which are cheaper and far superior to the HMO offerings.

    In conclusion, if you pathetic, whining saps can’t calculate your own benefits accurately, then you should not be attempting to teach my child how to add. So, why don’t you all quit crying, and join the Army to get that needed knowledge called “suck it up and drive on!” And while you at it being personally offended by this message, you should check out the unemployment rate for the nation, and then count your blessings that you have a nice cushy job, loaded with free benefits, tenure, only requires you to work 9 months a year, and you have a job to come back too. You people really are pathetic, why don’t you just shut your mouths and concentrate on raising the education level in America so that all the jobs are not gone for your own children!

    Who am I: A 19-year veteran of IT and the Army. I’ve worked for major corporations, privately held companies, small businesses, in Healthcare, Manufacturing, Finance, Distribution, Education (yes, just like you), Trade Associations, Insurance, and Agriculture. I’ve been all around this great country of ours and worked in 11 states. I’m proud to be an American and for the 4th time in my life I’m unemployed. I have 4 kids and a wife to support so I will not be unemployed for long. Like I said earlier, count your blessing and spend your energy trying to do you jobs better.

  • Pink123 April 14th, 2009 at 10:48 am 100

    I am mother of 2 kids with 12 years of IT experience. I have a Masters in COmputers. My kids would be going to school next year. I am thinking of moving into Education. This will give me more relaxed work and be with my kids. What do you guys think of the opportunities I have in the Thousand Oaks, CA area? I have never taught in a school setting before but I think I am good with teaching kids. I can teach science, maths and of course computers. Appreciate any input…opportunities, salary, benefits etc.


  • blue April 16th, 2009 at 10:08 pm 101

    I am considering becoming a P.E. teacher. I was wondering what some other P.E. teachers are making, and if they make the same as any other teacher, particulary in TN. I was would also appreciate some comments from P.E. teachers about their job and if they truly enjoy doing it.
    Thank You

  • Sheena April 21st, 2009 at 7:10 pm 102

    I just thought I would share a tidbit of information with those of you who have not been teachers, but have this optimistic view of what teaching is going to be like.

    Honestly, and I mean this in the most pleasant way possible, this career can be an absolute nightmare.

    I have taught for two years and I was EXTREMELY optimistic before I started teaching, all throughout student teaching I just knew I was going to love it, etc. Things will change for you, mark my words.

    Endless paperwork, administration problems, angry/volatile/greedy children who will literally spit in your face, steal your stuff, and tell you to f*ck off (I worked in elementary by the way). Parents won’t do anything about it and you will be subjected to much scrutiny and hours upon hours upon hours of work. As someone said, the pay is a slap in the face! I have no children, no mortgage, no car payment and I wear pants with holes in them. I am not exaggerating. I literally “float” checks every month to pay bills, and I NEVER buy anything for myself. I took my salary and divided it by the amount of hours I worked this past year, I made a little less than $6.00 an hour.

    There are joys but they do not outweigh the cons. I remember having this very optimistic view of how I was going to change education, how I WASN’T going to be like my teachers growing up, and I have stood true to that… but I didn’t sign up for a lifeless existence where I never leave the confines of my house because I spend my entire weekend differentiating lessons or preparing for Bobby’s student support meeting.

    If you want a family, a life, and you can’t just settle at doing a mediocre job, then run away. I am sorry if it sounds harsh, but I would rather be honest then watch you follow my mistakes. Ask me two years ago, I was sure I was “born to be a teacher”, now I realize I was in love the idea of teaching, not what teaching is in today’s age. The sad thing is that no one knows until your in the classroom, and then it’s too late!

  • Char April 21st, 2009 at 7:45 pm 103

    “And while you at it being personally offended by this message, you should check out the unemployment rate for the nation, and then count your blessings that you have a nice cushy job, loaded with free benefits, tenure, only requires you to work 9 months a year, and you have a job to come back too. You people really are pathetic, why don’t you just shut your mouths and concentrate on raising the education level in America so that all the jobs are not gone for your own children!”

    Amazing, and I am sure you’ve never stepped over a foot into a classroom. I don’t want to hear crap how you’ve worked in “education,” teaching and working in a field with your “IT” experience has major differences.

    Give me a break, “cushy”? You should be smacked in the mouth for blatant disrespect. I get less than 6 hours a sleep a night and I just lost my job this year due to layoffs, so you can throw that garbage right out the window.

    I am sure with your IT salary, you really understand what it is like not to be able to buy a new pair of shoes. Money management has nothing to do with it! Try working in OK where the AVERAGE salary is 33,000. That’s not starting salary…

    It’s people and parents like you who make teachers want to leave. Educate yourself before you come bashing a profession you know so little about. Need more information? I’d be happy to pass along my 10 page article on why teachers leave…

  • pink123 April 25th, 2009 at 7:52 pm 104

    Well Char..that’s rude, really really rude. If you really wanted to vent, please excuse me….do you think I haven’t gone through a layoff? Come on Char, you don’t know me. Please think twice before you call somebody “cushy”…or some absurd made up word. Sleeping for 6 hours? I have to travel 4 hours daily to keep my job…now who is it that needs a break?

    Char, you make a point about my IT salary. Do you think, I am able to draw that kind of salary by just partying hard and going on spring breaks. No, I put my parents’ hard earned money and my time and energy to make it through college, so that I can have a better life for me and my family. What did you think, I am asking for help on the forum just for fun?

    Sheena, I really appreciate your input. I have heard from others how difficult it is, specially when the parents and kids don’t cooperate in the process of ‘raising the education level in America’ (Char’s words).

  • TexasTeacher April 25th, 2009 at 9:42 pm 105

    There sure are a lot of angry people out there! I have been teaching middle school in Texas for six years. Some weeks I hate it; some weeks I love it. For all of those who have made generalizations about teachers, you have to remember that there are incompetent people in all professions. I’ve had horrible teachers and excellent teachers. The biggest problems on my campus are unnecessary meetings and paperwork, ineffective leadership, and neglectful parents. Teachers end up being counselors, jailers, and parents. I don’t feel that I get paid what I’m worth, but I’m making more than I did as a secretary in an office (where I was doing the work of two people and got a thirty cent raise over a period of six and a half years). I could make more money at another job, but I choose to teach because I enjoy it and I like the kids. If I ever get to the point that I don’t, I’ll change careers. I’ve done it before, and I can do it again.

  • pink123 April 29th, 2009 at 5:02 am 106

    Thanks for your input TexasTeacher. Love your attitude !

    “I could make more money at another job, but I choose to teach because I enjoy it and I like the kids. If I ever get to the point that I don’t, I’ll change careers. I’ve done it before, and I can do it again.”

  • Lori May 4th, 2009 at 7:37 pm 107


  • Lucille May 5th, 2009 at 10:57 am 108

    Hey, what’s everyone talking about? I posted a comment, and no one responded! It would be nice if someone could give me some advice! “Thanks”


  • Rob May 21st, 2009 at 9:44 am 109

    I came to this forum to research teacher salaries from state to state. I really didn’t find the data I was looking for.

    Instead, I found that the problems teachers are experiencing in Florida, are similar all over the country.

    I am disappointed in the comments from ill informed individuals who believe that teachers “have it cushy.” It is these sorts of attitudes that have made it difficult for teaching professionals to be able to get the tools and supplies necessary in order to be able to fulfill the requirements imposed upon them by their states and local school boards.

    I am reminded of a bumper sticker I saw some years ago…”Wouldn’t it be great if schools got all the funding needed and the military needed to hold a bake sale in order to buy bullets”

    Teachers help mold the future. A teaching job does not end when the school bell rings and the kids leave the classroom.

  • FL_Teacher June 27th, 2009 at 10:42 pm 110

    “Cushy” is hardly how I would describe a teacher’s life. I just finished my second year of teaching in a not-so-cushy school. Fighting, swearing, and disrespect from teenagers is not my ideal surroundings, but I continue to teach there because I love the feeling of possibly making a positive difference in the lives of children, many of whom do not have a stable family life or the best of economic situations. As a single person, my salary of about $38000 (including 2 supplements – one for commuting to a school not many want to go to and one for being sponsor which requires many additional hrs added onto the “7.5” we supposedly work) should be enough. However, living costs are high here and so are utilities. I’ve had my water turned off, and almost lost my electricity today because I simply couldn’t afford to make the payments. I do spend money on so-called pleasures, unless food and gas are listed under that category. I try to manage my money in a very frugal way, but every little thing adds up so quickly ($1000 rent, $200 Electric, $60 a week in gas, the list goes on). So, I pose a question to all: Does that sound cushy? I’m not trying to complain, I’m really not. I am very greatful to still have a job. I thank God for that. However, we teachers bust our butts every day, from dealing with administration to grading and creating “fun” lessons to keep the kids engaged, to mandatory summer training (yes we do have to work in the summer) to classes I am currently taking (in the summer) to increase my teaching ability and become more highly qualified. I love what I do, that’s why I’m doing it. So, please don’t belittle a profession that many hard-working ppl do every day. RESPECT teachers and maybe, just maybe, the complaining and griping you see on here might decrease. To all the teachers and prospective teachers out there: Keep your head up and keep doing the awesome job that you are already doing! We ARE making difference in the lives of children, even though some ppl may not see it (but I don’t see those ppl in the classroom either!) Don’t give up and remember, we are molding the future!
    P.S. I am not an English teacher, so please do not inform me of any grammar/spelling mistakes I may have made. Thank you! Take care! 🙂

  • bigguy15 July 12th, 2009 at 11:23 pm 111

    I teach in louisiana and the salary is not bad when you consider the cost of living here. Sure it is true that teachers have a better retirement system than most professions, however the health care here is actually a little more expensive than what alot of non-teachers pay for the same exact coverage. Dental and vision are not free here, and quite frankly it’s very bad insurance and not worth the money. Teaching is actually a 10 month job in most places now, but that 2 month break is one of the only redeeming qualities of the job, other than the satisfaction of helping young people. It has been my experience that teaching is full of more disapointmenting experiences than joyful ones, but in order to be succesful as a teacher you must be able to keep that in perspective; you are not going to save the world, no matter how hard you try. However, if yo try really hard you might help 3 or 4 kids in your career. If you can handle that, you will be just fine.

  • nenanoo July 18th, 2009 at 2:53 am 112

    You all are complaining about not making enough money. I have never known of a teacher who lives in a small house or drives a beat up car or wears bad clothes. They always lives in big, fine homes, drive nice cars and dress to the nines.

    Someone complained of making $800 in two weeks. I make $800 in a MONTH. Going back to school would help me make way more money than I am making right now. I work for the public and put up with crap too. There are many days I would like to cry because of how badly people treat me. Try making $8.30 an hour! You would croak!

    You also get insurance and have vacation time. I have insurance through my husband, thank God. I have no vacation time and seriously need it!

    I plan on going back to school and getting a bachelor’s degree to teach elementary school and then while teaching working on getting my masters. Maybe I will be like you all and complain about it someday.

  • Classy6 July 22nd, 2009 at 2:12 pm 113


  • NITIN July 24th, 2009 at 7:12 am 114

    i am having masters degree in physics and masters degree in education and masters in phylosophy and having post graduate diploma in computer science having 18 years of experince ……how much salary can i get in atlanta georgia state usa in high schools for physical science teaching ….

    how much salary i will get

  • Rebecca Mazzella July 24th, 2009 at 7:49 pm 115

    Greetings to all 114! I can’t believe I read every single response, but I am glad I did. I, like many of you, am a professional educator (32 years experience in elementary and middle school education). Now that I am 56 years old, I too wonder why did and do I continue in this profession. Yes I signed the contract for the offered salary, I am a union member, but I won’t strike during the school year, if I have sign the contract.
    When I started teaching, my salary was $10,000. For a kid out of college, for a contract of TEN MONTHS or 200 days, that was great…that was in 1978 in WV. I was single, living at home, no worries. College tution in 1971 at WVU or any state university was $125 to $135. Those were the days. Now we are looking at $2,500 for tuition. So I got a real good deal in higher education cost for a B.S. in Education. Now older and some wiser … I do wish I obtained my masters. After 13 years of teaching, my salary stayed frozen unless there was a State cross the board raise. This does not happen very often. My salary today is $43,000. My husband is a teacher also … together we gross $78,000. My son will be a freshman in college this year. FERPA says we can afford to pay $17,000 towards his education this year. The federal goverernment does not take in consideration our already financial obligations.
    I am thankful that I have a job … I thank God every night when I pray. Things could be worse and for us they have been and for some single teachers they are. Those who are concerned about house payments, car payments, insurance home and mobile, utilities … you have that right to be concerned on “how to make ends meet”. The following are just some of my personal beliefs, based on life experience … don’t have answers or solutions for all things, but here goes…
    Why is there a lack of respect by people outside the education field?
    Because some of the educators don’t respect themself or what they do.
    Sometimes I wish we were paid like back in the olden days … where housing was provided for that one room school teacher, students brought coal in to help heat the teacher’s home, eggs and other food items were also given. At least we would not have to worry about a house payment, food, and utilities. Mine is $820. That does not include utilities etc. I do not live in a big house or a fancy neighborhood. The only teachers I know that live in big houses and fancy neighborhoods are those whose husbands have a higher paying job and the teacher’s salary is more like … the families “mad money” for vacations, extra cars, name brand clothes, etc. So to them, they teach because “It’s all about the children”, “Out of the ‘love of teaching'”, “Hoping to make a differnce in a child’s life”, “Empty Nest”, “Someone elses turn to be homeroom mother”. I am very serious. We live in a modest home that started out as $96,000, but because of financial needs due to medical illness, refinancing a couple times so we wouldn’t loose our home…anyway, back on the farm. Medical insurance for FREE is NOT a given. It was when I started teaching … it was given in place of a PAY RAISE. Now I pay 60/40 … the new teachers starting out in WV will now NOT BE PARTICIPATING IN THAT PAY RAISE. Unfortunately, if they want insurance … it will all come out of THEIR SALARY (When my sister was off sick, for a single coverage it was $400 a month) and WV does have teacher unions. The unions are not a guarantee that we are compensated for all we give “Freely … No Child Left Behind”. I cannot in my county ask a student to have pencil or paper.
    My county allocated budget has to provide. I teach art, so 95% of my supplies I order are consumeable. The other is sometimes 5 fingered discounted. Wonder how many colleges are providing the students with a computer in their dorm room this year … or that’s right No Child Left Behind stops after graduation. When you are 18 you are an adult … right? Lots of work experience & money saved …not!I truly feel that comments made by teachers like, “we are not in it for the money” etc. is part of the reason “We are not given the money”.
    As I repeat myself, it is great to do charity work … but don’t make it’s someones livelyhood.
    Those who are financially independant, let someone who needs a job have your teaching job.
    If your parents have set up a trust fund where it really doesn’t matter what you major in, because financially you don’t need it, join the Peace Corp. I applaud you for trying to make it on your own … but when it comes down to who bought your car, paid for your education, decorates your home or buys your home … don’t take a teaching job from someone who needs the money. Become a Teacher’s Advocate!
    My heart does go out to the singles or singel family teachers. If you get sick, you have no financial back up to help when you are down. Sick leave are earned days … pay is docked if you have not worked x amount days to earn your 1-16. If you use up your sick leave, I hope you BUY disablity insurance, but that doesn’t kick in until you haven’t worked 45 days. In WV we earn 16 days per year. My sister is single, 2 master degrees, $48,000. When she came down with cancer the first time and used up all of her sick leave, there was no husband to help pick up the slack. My husband and I try to help the best we can, but “you can’t bleed blood from a turnip”. Unfortunately there has been another cancer operation and needs of sick leave, plus things like regular gallbladder etc… etc… she is a fantastic … creative teacher … Even with insurance she has a $2,000 out of pocket before insurance kicks in 100% for hospital stays only, and we still have a co-pay of $20 for each doctor visit…whether they can figure out what is wrong or not. Medicine $5-$50 co-pay. This past week she was prescribed 3 meds and non of them ended up helping to make her well. Of course the first two, after going back two times to the doc ended up being the wrong medicium, but the 3rd she did have to finish and each was $40 a piece.
    I like many teachers are thankful that the dept. of edu where we are employeed offers a 12 month pay option to the 10 month. I am not getting free money, I have already earned the money I get over the summer … I am on 12 months, but my pay check is smaller during the year … we have our pay deferred so like a savings account without interest, we will have money coming in. Yes it is nice to have certain holidays off, but they ARE NOT PAID HOLIDAYS. Yearly calendars are made to be sure we are in house … the school teaching 200 days with students. We are told when we may have time off. I don’t need a week at Christmas & Easter, I would rather get out in May instead of mid-June. Wow summers off … peak season for vacations $$$ Wish I could take advantage of some non peak prices. It is looked down upon if we take time off for “vacations” during non-peak seasons or our spouse. Some boards of education see it as a breach in contract and a “disciplinary letter” is put in your file.
    The 16 days of sick leave we earn … we may use 3 days as personal. We don’t have to say how we are using them, but as a “parent” those 3 days could end up being that you had to stay home because your child is sick. Sorry, homeroom mothers are so wonderful, but most teachers in elementary school want ones who can give more than 2 days to help plan parties, field trips, help with book fairs during school hours. So as a parent. I was off when my child was off from school. GREAT! But in elementary school, I went to one parent child lunch before Thanksgiving. I never saw my child get off the school bus and run happily to the front door to tell all about the wonderful day, except when I had to stay home sick from a unmentioned fringe benefit – the time a student threw up all over me, to ask if he could go to the rest room, or the lice problems, these students were from well to do families. It can happen to anyone. But I still have to use my sick leave, when a parent should have kept their child home… plus I then need a doctor’s excuse $$$$$. It makes you wonder. Lunches at school are expensive, but during cafe duty I often get to rumage through the garbage to help a student find their retainer. This year I slid and fell hurting my back, neck and knee due to a food fight. Workman’s comp helped with Physical therapy, but I couldn’t go as often as needed due to the fact, yes, I work a second job after school to help make ends meet. I also have to do volunteer work at my work place, no told to or in contract, but to be able to upgrade the computer I have to have in my room to send attendance I had to earn the $$. How many people have to buy the computer you work on for work??? State departments say “students have to experience blah, blah blah … mandated Content Standards … where’s the beef? Where’s the funding? Where are my supplies? Does the Department of education make their employees spend their own money (keep receipts for tax time), ask for patrons, car washes??? Always funds for New uniforms for football this year!!! But computers? Clay? Paint? etc???
    Chaperone dances … those are fun. It is fun to see students interacting outside a classroom environment, until you have to call the parent, and the parent sees nothing wrong with fighting, or “dirty dancing”… or their clothes do not meet county dress code. So the puppies are exposed and the pants are belted at the knees and the underware … TMI.
    One of the things teaching has done for me is to keep me young … is it the new vocabulary and what it means, music I deplore…It makes me stay current and on top of things…challenges me!

    So if you go into teaching … join the union, they went to bat for me when I wasn’t going to be able to use my sick leave for maternity leave, because my delivery was via adoption. I did get to use my sick leave after they went to bat for me! Yea AFT Union! I teach because I didn’t leave WV to go to NY to get a job in the theatre acting or design … didn’t have what it would take to leave home. It wasn’t in the cards. I truly believe what I teach is important in a person’s life. Inspite of student & parent remarks about “He doesn’t like art … he likes football” “I don’t like to draw” Well, there’s lots of things I don’t like, but the fact is Art is life … art is everywhere and artistic decisions are made constantly throughout life aesthetically and functionally. So my students can accept or reject what I have to offer. I cannot want more for them, then what they want for themself.
    I teach because that is what my parents told me to major in (Art 1-12 and I chose speech and drama 7-12) If I had it to do over … architecture would have been my choice.
    In 4-5 years my son will be out of college and I will retire and do something else.
    I believe education needs the young … even without experience … you hear that alot … we are looking for an experienced teacher … hello!!
    How are the New teacher going to get the experience unless they are hired.
    I use to take work home, and grade to the wee hours. No longer do I do that. I may stay until 5ish … but I do not grade at home. Teachers need lives too.
    I give no homework over holidays, because I no longer spend my holidays grading and designing new art stations, project ideas etc.
    Work is done at school … I have too much work to do at home … like … cook, clean, laundry, grocery shopping and oh yes … fam time.

    What ever you do in life … don’t make excuses for why you chose teaching … you teach because that was your choice, that is what makes you happy … if you are happy with everything teaching comes with, then it is your nitch…but don’t sell yourself short.
    We as educators wear many hats … you get what you pay for … I tell my students about the work they turn in, grades … I asked them … how many of you would pay a housing contractor to put up only the studs of a house for $300,000 dollars without the trimmings. No one agreed to that. So the same with me and their art work. If they were to do a “completed composition” and they hand me a couple squiggles in a corner or half a drawing … don’t expect the grade they want. It’s a waste of my time to turn in incomplete work and a lack of respect to themselves and me.
    Respect needs to be shown to teachers like in “Jerry McQuire” …. “Show me the money”
    Respect … some of those who talk about “bad” teachers … there are none…how did they get into law school, become doctors, or join the service???? When one points their finger at someone for not doing “their job” there are 3 pointing back at themself.
    Have a good year and be good to yourself!

  • Idolette July 25th, 2009 at 9:03 am 116

    Sad situation. After 20 years of teaching, I only made $35,000, have a child and home to support, and was cut $16,000 for the next school year. Who can make it on $19,000 on Long Island? I had to leave the job to seek employment in another field.

    It seems many on Long Island complain that the teacher’s salaries are too high! Not so in all cases. Is teaching really a profession to encourage others to go in these days?

    I think NOT

  • Gerianne July 25th, 2009 at 10:48 am 117

    I do not wish to offend you, or belittle your educational accomplishments, but you should really take some courses in English and communications.

  • Cliff July 27th, 2009 at 4:33 pm 118

    Folks, my daughter is a new teacher. We live the state of Maryland and after 2yrs she was part of a state cutback and was devastated. When she first told me of her want to teach I tried to talk her out of it.Let me explain why, I watched the state of Md 8 or 10 yrs ago hire many new teachers( $250,000 for the job fair) to then 1 year later decide because of budget issues to let 50% of the new hires go. It was horrible at my daughters school, many teachers had relocated, purchased houses or had leases and could not just “be out of work”. Seeing this and not wanting my child to be in this type of situation I advised her continue her education and become a doctor, engineer anything but a teacher. Also I come from a family of teachers and have my entire life heard my older sisters and their colleagues speak in private about how crappy they are treated by parents, principals and administration. As far as your unions go, you are on your own. I love teachers, I love the committment it takes but in the States we undervalue and over regulate our teachers and I would not recommend the field to anyone. That is speaking as a father and taxpayer.


  • Ashley August 2nd, 2009 at 8:20 am 119

    I keep on seeing comments from people in different cities and states keep on comparing their salaries to other cities and states without taking into consideration the cost of living, commuting, etc. in that particular city or state. What pays for a nice new home in North Carolina pays for a shack in New York and California. I always chuckle when I hear this type of comment when people are bragging about someone in California making $60,000 a year.

  • Corrine August 3rd, 2009 at 6:28 pm 120

    Someone mentioned teaching abroad to make more money. I lived abroad in Japan for a year to teach English as a foreign language. I´ll say, it WAS a great experience and the fact that I´d get paid 55k right out of college was very appealing! I didn´t, however, take into consideration that my rent would be over 1500 a month and a basic lunch would be around $15! If you´re considering working abroad, do some serious research on cost of living and rate of exchange. I don´t regret any of it, because when will I have that chance later in life to live in Japan?
    Right now I´m in Peru working for a lot less but also saving most of it because of very low cost of living! PLUS a lot of teaching abroad only requires a 100-hour TEOFL certificate that you can complete in two months. Just my two cents!

  • Corrine August 3rd, 2009 at 6:38 pm 121

    I also wanted to add one thing about teaching abroad. Although I grew up in, went to H.S. and college in the United States, I haven´t done either student teaching or professional teaching there. From some of the horror stories I´ve heard on this forum, U.S. kids are absolute brats! I have a plan to return to the U.S. in a few years, get my master´s in education and teach Spanish in highschools, but I´m slowly starting to rethink my “plan¨. In Japan, students were extremely respectful/ curious of my “western-ness” (although there is a LOT of western influence there already). Language barriers and cultural differences made teaching difficult, but I never felt disrespected.
    My hearts go out to my brothers and sisters teaching in the US, and might you consider the possibility of teaching abroad for a year? A lot of jobs (especially in Asia and the middle east) will pay for your room and board. Just a suggestion.

  • Tyronda Joyner August 9th, 2009 at 7:28 am 122

    I saw a website called Aclipse that offered positions teaching abroad. I want to do this so bad and I am currently in school for elementary education. The company said that one of the requirements was to have a bachelors degree, which obviously I do not have yet. Do you know of any way around this or a company who does not have this as a requirement.

  • antoinette August 15th, 2009 at 9:44 pm 123

    Needed to know some information about teachers and I am so glad this website helped a lot. One more thing I would want to know is exactly how much the starting salary in new york city is? Also does anybody know if one could [obtain] a job in teaching after an [associate] degree in education. If yes, how much should one be looking at?

  • Tim September 8th, 2009 at 7:57 pm 124

    After reading a few post I had to comment on my experience as a teacher regarding their salary. I got into teaching because I wanted to help young adults, coach sports and have the enjoyment of more time spent with raising my girls. I completely agree to the fact that teachers are under paid in most cases, not all but most. I made it 3 years before I was eaten alive. I’ve been cussed at, broken up plenty of fights, and while there another teacher was even punched by a parent. I’ve had my windows broke in the classroom and had plenty of lessons unfinished due to fist fights in the middle of class. Teaching in a city school is probably the toughest thing you can do, and the turn over for teaches is ridiculous at that level. In my 3 years of teaching I was the only one left out of 14 new hires by the 3rd year. My mentors fed me all the lines of classroom management, prep and everything you can think of. By my 3rd year I had no choice but to run a tight ship like a drill instructor just to get things done, yet still the school was a mess and the kids were rough. I respect anyone working in a city school and they deserve every penny they make and should be making a lot more. Kids can get away with far too much in school these days and they know it. Even though I don’t teach any longer, I actually started my own business and I would have never done it had I not had such a bad experience, but now I am thankful for it because it’s brought me the freedom I’ve been looking for. I seriously saw myself teaching for 30 years, and though I don’t anymore they should be paid a lot more because the stuff they deal with in the classroom and out is enough to to make you say uncle.

  • From Ontario, Canada September 10th, 2009 at 9:50 pm 125

    Just to give you a sense of what things are like “north of the border” (Canada).

    $1 CAD = $0.92 USD

    In Ontario a beginning teacher earns (gross) $38K-$47 CAD ($35-43K USD), depending on location (city vs. town) and education (bacholor vs. master degree). After ~4 years that goes up to $52-60K CAD and after 11 years to $80K to $90K. Teachers are required to be at work from the Tuesday after the first Monday in September (day after Labour Day holiday) to the end of June.

    To give you a sense of taxes at the top end, if you earn $80K CAD your take-home after ALL deductions (taxes, pension) is $55K CAD ($50K USD). At lower income levels your take home is a much higher proportion of your gross income [people often have an overinflated belief of how much tax they actually pay].

    Standard health care (surgery, doctor’s visits, etc.) is universal and free as long as you are a resident of Canada. Drugs are separate but ALL teachers in ALL jurisdictions will have additional medical coverage simply by being employed full time (part timers often have to pay extra for drugs coverage).

    Teacher salaries vary across the country but they’re usually in-line with cost of living.

    Teachers tend to get paid in the top 20%-10% of all wage earners in Canada which is also commensurate with their typical education levels. Good pay has attracted strong candidates to teaching and it’s paid off — Canada often ranks amongst the top for educational outcomes. Perhaps that’s the path the US should follow rather than nickel-and-diming its schools. Teachers with more than a few years of experience earning $30K USD? Those salaries you see in many developing nations :-(.

    Good luck to you all.

    PS Before you jump on the next plane and head up to Ontario (my stomping ground), you should note that teaching jobs are in short supply at the moment. A combination of political developments from 1995-2002 (scared new teachers away) and a recent lull in retirements has lead to an over-supply of under-employed teachers :-(.

  • Kate September 11th, 2009 at 2:34 am 126

    Well, I think one of the things that people complaining about teachers lavish salaries (I make 30,000) are forgetting is that most of us have 6 years of college education. Me, I’m planning to leave. I’m good at my job (teaching awards, good results, ect.) I work with special ed and violently disturbed kids. On bad days, I get punched, spit on etc. I still love the kiddos, but the respect from the rest of the world is the problem. Frankly, we pay jobs that we respect more higher and we treat people based on their pay. For your reference, my husband and I live in a one bedroom apartment and we can’t afford the health insurance that’s part of my package, so we get it through his job. Partially due to stress, we lost a pregnancy this year and it’s been the final straw. Reading the incredibly disrespectful posts on this forum have convinced me of several things.

    1) If you really hate teachers that much, you should home school your kids. Everyone wins that way, right?

    2) Education issues are much higher up the ladder than some one barely making enough to pay her bills can influence. My big goal this year: have enough chairs for all of my students.

    3) We aren’t in a position to be successful. Those of you who think it’s so easy really ought to come and show the rest of us how it’s done. Most of my kids are transitioning from mental institions or juvenile facilities. One of them shot at one of his peers. He’s 11. Have fun.

    I have 6 years of college experience and frankly, make the same amount per paycheck as I did in my last summer job. If you never, ever got a pay raise, you’d be bitter too. No one tells IT professionals they should stay in the field because they love it. (Frankly, my summer job was with an IT company and it was the easiest job I’ve ever had. No respect for bashing people who actually work for a living.)

    As for the associates degree, you need to get that BA, but you can work as an assistant, which is a great way to get experience. Pay will really very with where you live, but probably won’t be very high.

  • Jen September 14th, 2009 at 3:02 am 127

    I just graduated with my master’s degree in English in France, and I plan to come to the US for fall 2010 to take my certificate and be a French teacher.
    For those who were wondering, you need to have at least a bachelor’s and to pass a very selective competition called CAPES (20% make it each year) to be a teacher in France. Then, the state places you in a school for the rest of your life whether you like it or not. If you quit, they cancel your competition certificate (!). You get paid about 1100€ a month after taxes. After 3 to 5 years, you can expect a raise up to 1500€. Salaries do not depend on schools, they are nationwide based. Our biggest advantage over US teachers is that we teach only about 20 to 22h a week. The social benefits are the same than any other employee in France.
    The point of my post, outside giving some info about teachers on France was to ask what percentage of taxes do you pay in the US. I know it seems to depend on a lot of things in the US (in France, everybody is the same: 23%).
    Thank you so much for anybody who would answer, at least my giving me his gross and after taxes example.

  • Lara Brogdon September 17th, 2009 at 4:00 pm 128

    Good for Canadians. As for Kate, your comment reeks of bitterness – so yes,you probably should find something else. I have many many friends who are either profs or middle school public school teachers. Salary pkg should be examined based on retirement, state benefits, only work 9 mos of year, etc. Yes, and other pros work offtime for which they aren’t paid either. Homeschooling parents pay taxes for a service they don’t use – and don’t whine about it either. Why look at it at US vs. THEM. Public, private schools and homeschoolers all care about children !

  • Rod September 17th, 2009 at 6:11 pm 129

    Hey all!

    I am a teacher of 24 years and have an advanced degree. I checked on teaching overseas several times but found every time that we were better off in the U.S.- at least for now. In Australia for example, withholding taxes are about 48%. That includes national healthcare. Housing is about the same as here. The problem? Taxes. That was the case in every other sampling I took. Countries may say that they make $70K as a teacher but when you only get half of it, that is quite a difference. My state does not have state income tax and I only pay federal. My advice is not only to look at salaries but all the taxes and retirement benefits. Some districts pay your medical care after retirement too. As teachers, you really need to look at the whole picture since it is a career choice for 25-30 years!

  • Kat September 19th, 2009 at 11:44 am 130

    It’s a shame that teacher’s don’t get payed very well in the United States. It sounds like things are much better for teachers in Canada.

  • Nicole September 30th, 2009 at 2:58 pm 131

    I am a junior majoring in Elementary Education at University of Central Florida and I am planning to move to California (probably Los Angeles area) when I graduate (May 2011). Do any of you Californians have any advice as to schools or cities that are doing the most hiring of first year teachers?

    I agree with most of you when you say that you have to look at cost of living vs salary. What really made me upset was that they were a couple people saying stop complaining you make enough. Don’t get me wrong, I know it will be a blessing to have a job. But as far as teachers getting paid enough, I don’t agree. Teachers are with these kids for six hours a day/five days a week (most students will sleep at least 8 hours a day)that is a quarter of the student’s day Monday-Friday. I think that teacher deserve a lot more than what they get because most do put in a lot of effort. Actors and sports players get way more in a month or two (sometimes in the matter of days) than teachers do in a year. Why are they more important than students that they deserve that much money? It’s crazy to me how people can post those comments saying stop whining and complaining. Most (not all) teachers are underpaid and have a right to be upset. But it is because we love what we do and like to make a difference in a student’s life, that we pick this profession. Obviously it is not because we think we are going to get paid a lot. On the other hand, teachers should not be getting paid so little that they have to live paycheck to paycheck and worry about how they are going to cover next month’s rent.

    It is crazy how the government says that teachers make a difference and are important but then turn around and won’t pay them as much as they are paying other ‘important’ professions (doctors, lawyers, actors, etc).

  • Magistra October 14th, 2009 at 6:39 am 132

    For people interested in teaching English abroad: I taught ESL in Hungary for two years, now I teach at a university in China. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to teach. The students are more respectful in both places (I was a sub in America before all this) and the school’s expectations of you are low. I do NOT mean you should do this if you are not committed to quality teaching. The point is that the schools leave you alone. No meetings, no parents conferences etc. It is quite easy to find a position in China. They hire 150,000+ teachers per year. Just figure out what city you want to live in, Wiki to find out what universities are there, then send your resume/pic/recommendations to all the universities that have some English on the website. I found a position overnight. I am certainly not wealthy ($600/month), but I have 3+ months of paid vacation, a free ok apartment and lots of travel experience under my belt. This is probably the only remotely “cushy” teaching job in the world. Please be culturally respectful and work hard when you come! This is still a real job.

  • newbie October 26th, 2009 at 4:51 pm 133

    Hello everyone. I came to this website also to research teacher salaries and was quickly caught up in all of the comments. I am pursuing my teaching degree and have not been convinced of doing otherwise but some of these really scare me. Did all of the teachers I had feel this way? Did they all wish they were somewhere else than in the classroom with us? I really do understand those who are not happy with the pay. Everyone in every profession (not counting the wealthy, of course) thinks they should be making more than they do. When you work hard every day and know you are doing more than is asked of you, it’s easy to think so. Even after a raise that you are SO excited about can seem too small after another six months seeing that paycheck.

    I only ask all of you to take a look at yourselves. We have one lifetime, one chance and making ours the best it can be, and if we’re lucky to make a difference in someone else’s life. If you’ve been a teacher for 30 years and decide you’re done, quit. Pursue another career. Do what makes you happy and makes you feel like you are living up to what YOU think is life’s best. Money, unfortunately, is very important but live according to your pay if that is the job you want.

    The world is not a happy place these days and our children are watching all of it. Every child deserves a chance at a great education. Not every child will be perfect and not every parent will be understanding but that is part of the job. It is our job to make sure the children always have someone to learn from. Let’s be the example we’re supposed to be and take pride in our careers.

  • Arizona Teacher November 1st, 2009 at 11:06 am 134

    My master’s degree would net more money in another profession. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I have my job, and it is stable enough to keep me content. I have general clothes and an economy car. That’s the basics in life. However, there’s not much money left over for splurging (is having cable splurging?) or even Happy Hour. Vacation consists of walks in the park, with Disneyland as being a far fantasy.

    If you’re a “good/skilled” teacher, you know that you have the skills, intelligence, and perseverance to be raking in 6 figures in a different field of work… with much less stress (think of distribution managers with possibly just a GED). True, these jobs are competitive, but not really so much with the qualifications that a “good/skilled” teacher possesses.

    It is tempting… quite tempting sometimes. What happens though when the “good/skilled” teachers leave? What is society left with then?

    My heart would break to see my school in the hands of incompetence. The school where there are children that I have cried, sweated, and teared for (metaphorically speaking) in order to get them to become moral, responsible, and educated individuals.

    That is why I stay.

  • jen November 13th, 2009 at 1:00 am 135

    Don’t be unnecesasarily grossed out by reality.. be gentle with yourself….I once went into teaching on the whim of saving the world with my unbelievable creativity and compassion….I hated school and took it up after I got my BS and didn;t have the understanding of how to enter the field I had majored in….Mass Com..you could really argue that universities don’t even prepare you for what you have to do…at any rate …teaching was an afterthought for me….I am subversive…I hate curricular regularity….it makes me sick

  • ria November 14th, 2009 at 1:48 pm 136

    I personally feel that its quite fair that there is this rule. Teachers should be able to teach all types of students. And I am a student! No, I did not read them all, sadly. I have a life with other stuff to do as well. I don’t get why everybody is getting so worked up about it!?

  • Brianca Page November 16th, 2009 at 9:11 pm 137

    my mother is a headstart teacher and during the summer she has to drwn her unemployment.headstart is extremely strict even more thamn the public school system and they get paid less

  • ‘nother az teacher November 22nd, 2009 at 12:24 pm 138

    Head Start is a wonderful program for children and families. But … you are right about the strict standards, and talk about paperwork!! Some think that working a 7 hour day (4 in the classroom, 3 for planning etc) and having children 4 days a week versus 5 would be a cake walk. Think again. The required paper work is mind-boggling. Elementary Ed teachers coming in have commented that we do far beyond what was expected of them in all areas including curriculum and assessments. We are (as teachers) assessed, evaluated, and under someone’s magnifying glass continuously. It’s unerving. Further, if we work part day/part year (35 hrs a week, 10 months), we do have to apply for unemployment during the summer. Who would hire someone for 6-8 weeks? By the time unemployment finally arrives, we are starting work again so plan and prepare to either starve or …. during that wonderful summer break. Our salary is not close to that of other teachers yet we are adhering to not only Head Start National Standards but State Standards and also NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children). We are standardized to death. Further, because of the pressures placed on K and beyond due to NCLB, there is a trickle down effect. Can you believe that Pre K teachers are feeling the pressure to teach children skills that are not appropriate because Kindergarten teachers are pressured from 1-3 grade teachers. Our education system is insane. Children are no longer allowed to be children. No wonder they are buring out by middle school. So are their teachers!! And we get to enjoy this for pennies on the dollar. Our efforts are most certainly from the heart as nothing else could make sense.

  • Tammy November 25th, 2009 at 10:13 pm 139

    I have been thinking seriously of becoming a teacher- I love children and I homeschooled my 3 now teenage daughters for 6 years during their elementary years. I work in a book store and have plenty of opportunities to speak with teachers about their job satisfaction. I’d say that approx. 80% of the people I spoken with about this profession seem to be displeased with it! I have read most of the comments on this page and have come to the conclusion that many of you are not very happy with your decision to be a teacher! I am glad for your honest insights- It seems that perhaps I need to look into another profession-

  • MI teacher December 9th, 2009 at 9:21 pm 140

    I am really sick of hearing people who are not teachers saying that we make too much money.

    For the work we do, we are paid very little. We don’t just work 9 months out of the year. We work 12 months of the year, creating curriculums, lesson plans, classroom activities, grading assignments, etc. And that is NOT as easy as it sounds. Did you know that there are right and wrong ways to arrange word banks for matching questions on a test? Or that Michigan teachers have standards and benchmarks for each grade and subject and most of us have to take all of those (sometimes almost 100) and plan 180 days of instruction, which I might add is NOT enough time to teach everything we need or want to.

    Teaching is not a job, it is a life. If a teacher is a good teacher, their salary doesn’t cover even half of the work they do, because SO MUCH is done outside of the school day and outside of the school year.

    Also, it is not 3 months off, paid. As teachers, we receive a salary for our work DURING THOSE 9 MONTHS. We can choose to have that salary broken up into 12 months worth of checks instead, but the dollar amount does not change.

    And to all of you who think that teachers are overpaid, just consider this:
    What is the average babysitting wage? Let’s say it’s $5/hr. for a family with one child. (That’s shooting low. I was being paid more when I was in middle school, years ago.)
    If you’re in a Michigan classroom, you probably have 35 kids in each class. If you teach 5 sections throughout the day, that’s $175 per class, which amounts to $875/day. For a week, that’s $4,375. For a month, that should work out to $17,500. And if we only work the 9 months that you say we do, we should be making $157,500 for just that 9 months. Now, also consider that we teach your children and spend more time with them than you probably do. Most Michigan teachers make about $50,000, which means they’re missing out on the $107,500 they’d be making if they were just babysitters.

    Next time you run into a teacher, you may think a little differently.

  • FRANK December 15th, 2009 at 8:26 am 141

    Here in England the main reason as to why students fail to learn properly in school, is that there seems to be an utter lack of discipline with many of the students. Schools have their hands tied as far as dishing out proper punishment which would otherwise be seen as a deterrent. As long as the student is allowed to run wild, the result will be that the student wont be able to read properly. I am certain that things are not very much different in the USA
    Working with 30 chilldren in a confined space is very tiresome ,so as teachers we need that bit of extra time off.I have met the usual naysayers who ironically cant even handle their own children at home.
    With a B.A. and a further one year teacher training, I make $70,000 a year after teaching for 10 years ,but London is very expensive.
    The low wages in parts of the USA are shocking.

  • STARKS – Alberta, Canada December 26th, 2009 at 3:39 pm 142

    Wow – what an insight… I came to the forum to research salaries of teachers in the US. Thought that I might like to teach in the States (where it is a bit warmer). Well…

    I would have to agree with posting #125. I am a high school math and science teacher working in Alberta, with a B. Comm., a B. Ed., and an educational administration certificate. I have been teaching for 10 years and I make about $82 000 CAD per year (due to my education level I make about $5000 more than the average teacher in Alberta). It seems that the US has not put the much deserved priority and respect into the educational system. That is very unfortunate – I know that you teachers work very hard (most of which is unseen by the public – and therefore misunderstood).

    I guess I will just put up with the cold weather and stay where teachers are a bit more appreciated (even though we have our problems as well)

    Best of luck to all of you in trying to raise the value placed on education. Keep up the great work with the future leaders of your country…

  • canadiangirl December 29th, 2009 at 10:11 pm 143

    I live in Ontario and teachers make a good living. We start at $40,000/year and increase by $4000 every year. We max out at $92000. We work 9months and get full benefits. Not bad for 6 hours a day. I am home by 3:30. I was thinking of moving to the states for the weather but I will take snow over being poor any day. I have kids to think of.

  • DD January 2nd, 2010 at 3:56 am 144

    Not sure where to start. I began teaching Sp Ed in 1992 in Hawaii. Made about 25,000 and poverty level was 40,000 or less. Very expensive to live there, more so than East coast or West coast! Lots of prejudice as well. Stayed 10 months, endured a major hurricane, and moved back to Indiana. Could not find work and ended up commuting to Ill. 1 hour away. Another 1yr gig. Third yr. got a contract in N. Indiana for the next 3 yrs. Got tired of the cold weather and decided to move to CA. I was a single parent of 3 kids all this time. Now the kids were grown and I saw my chance to go where it was warmer weather and see new things. In the past 12 years I have been hired over the phone in CA and have made the 2,200 mi. drive to work and leave family behind. (Kids are grown and 2 are married) I have been layed off more times than I can think of, even tho I have great evaluations! Budget cuts have been the reason given and sometimes no reason, but for 12 yrs this has been the case. Tried to move back to be near kids and grandkids, and done subbing and temp jobs but schools keep closing and one district even wanted me to be an aide for 3 yrs before getting worked into the system! I said I could not afford to do that and didn’t. My student loans have quadrupled in 17 yrs as I have not made enough to pay them down or off! My kids are not teachers because I have shown them how hard it is to make it financially. It doesn’t pay well, the politics are alive and well within the systems, no respect on any level really, and it is just a poor choice. I love kids, love teaching, but I also love to eat and have not owned a home in the entire 17 yrs I have taught! Cannot afford one. My daughter is an attorney, my son in law a doctor, my son an IT guy, and my other son is considering being an RN. Teaching in the US is respected on any level and is not lucrative. I have looked out of the US for possibilities. Have considered the Peace Corp as well. There are many places where one might feel more respect and appreciation. I have my passport and am just waiting for the opportunity to leave. Finishing up a workers comp issue, over a fall two years ago at a school. When I settle, I will be gone. Life is too short to be so miserable. I will either change careers to something in the medical field or just teach out of the country. I am 58. The US is shooting themselves in the foot with their lack of funding education and their lack of respecting teachers. Our children are suffering too it appears. Other countries are passing us up!

  • Amy January 3rd, 2010 at 1:22 pm 145

    I think that something everyone here needs to consider when looking at the difference in pay wages in different states is the requirment for each state’s teachers. Some states only require a teacher certification, some require a high school diploma, while other states require a masters degree. A person who only needs to graduate high school in order to teacher DESERVES to make less than someone who went to school for six years. For some of the southern states I am sure you will bashfully conceed that a high school diploma are your state’s stipulations for teaching. If you don’t like your pay than get a comparable high school diploma based job at McDonalds and shut up.

  • HJD January 4th, 2010 at 6:43 pm 146

    I always like to add fuel to the fire in these forums when I add the following: I am currently an administrator and was a teacher on Long Island, NY. Granted, the cost of living here is wildly high and the salaries allow a family of two teachers to live comfortably but not exorbitantly. With that said, there are some districts here whose teachers top out at MA+90 or EdD/PhD with 20+ years experience with a salary of $140,000 a year. It is commonplace for our teachers nearing retirement to be well into six figures. Yes, a teacher can be making far more than their principal. Average salary only tells half the story…

  • JEM January 8th, 2010 at 2:13 pm 147

    First and foremost, I commend all of you teachers out there who are over worked and underpaid in many regions. As a California resisdent and parent of three my oldest graduating here in 6 months from high school. I must say that it is very sad and scary how our value in education has been torn to shreds by government. My girls struggle with work and to me a lot of the things they learn today are too advance compare to what I learned growing up. No kids left behind – I often wonder if that is an oxymoron…the standards in CA want kids to meet such high standards when some kids are still coming out of pull-ups. Their is no safety net for teachers while administration (principals, superintendents) are well cushioned. Well I can only speak what I have encounter here in this state and my location. You guys keep up the good hearted work and many blessings.

  • annie January 16th, 2010 at 10:59 am 148

    If I were you guys, I would not be complaining AT ALL about what I made. I make $12,500 A YEAR in the state of MS, and I am just thankful that my family and I can get by every month. (Our gross household income, my husband and I combined, is about $37,500 a year, and that’s with a $595.00 house payment, about $630 worth of utilities, not counting groceries, gas for our vehicles, basic necessities, AND with our teenager in high school. So, ya’ll REALLY do have a lot to be thankful for if you are making $50,000 a year or above!! I would trade with that income any day!!! AND I SURE WOULD NOT BE COMPLAINING IF I WERE YOU, BECAUSE YOU COULD REALLY BE A WHOLE LOT WORSE OFF THAN WHAT YOU ARE RIGHT NOW!!!

  • carol January 27th, 2010 at 10:32 am 149

    Annie – Might I inquire as to what you do for a living? I didn’t see you mention in what profession you get paid $12,500/year in. Is it teaching?

  • Susan January 28th, 2010 at 7:04 pm 150

    Annie, your house payment is only $595.00. In San Diego, you might be able to rent a room in someone else’s house for that amount of money. We need a greater income because our cost of living is exorbitant. Plus, teachers in California have to pass numerous tests for their credential, after getting the undergrad and teacher education (which usually requires 6 months of unpaid student teaching). Now here’s the worst news: School districts in CA are negotiating with teacher unions to DECREASE salaries. My own district wants to decrease our salaries by 8%! It is outrageous that teachers are so disrespected.

  • jennifer r January 31st, 2010 at 4:56 am 151

    hello to everyone. I would like to know what is the average salaries for a special education teacher in New jersey. Thanks

  • Rachel Roach February 1st, 2010 at 7:52 pm 152

    Read you all and loved them all. Identified with most. True, I taught 38 years in CA. and loved every one of them. And now I do not recommend the career to new people. It is too straightlaced, must follow page and lesson curriculum type teaching, art, music, science , etc are almost gone completely with only Language Arts and Math to fill a day. We do not/cannot collect unemployment in the summer. It is not a year round job and we have not been laid off. No social security in CA either. Lucky one of 12 that may not collect it. And to think some states have no state taxes on teachers pensions. Wonderful!! Appreciation is there !. One more correction to make.. we pay 8.5% into the retirement system and the state pays only 2%, so straighten people out about how expensive public teachers pensions are. Not costly to the state at all! Our principal’s salary starts a bit above the highest paid teacher salary. Supposedly it rewards their better education and more responsibility that way. Two married teachers have a great life, but a single person has a hard time. That is probably true in most jobs. Teaching is a profession however, not a job. It should be paid and respected thusly. A doctor’s salary would be a good starting place. Does any state have rewards or consequences for test scores? Does the rebellious child have any reason to do well? No. That is why dear ol’ Schwarz. is wrong in basing teaching evaluations on test scores. My friends keep on teaching. Power to you all.

  • cw February 9th, 2010 at 5:59 am 153

    WOW! This is intimidating. I’m an Australian newly graduated teacher. Here in Australia the beginning salary for a teacher is roughly $54000. Although the wage is not bad, it is tough to gain fulltime permanent work- VERY TOUGH!
    At the moment the work field is a gluttened with so called ‘baby-boomers’ who are around 50 years of age. We’re told these teachers will all be retiring within the next five years, and there will be many more job opportunities for us. However, Universities are also putting too many teachers through, and many of which who are not suited to the job, and are there for the wrong reasons (i.e. these constant “HOLIDAYS”… which I’ll have you know are well deserved, and like many have stated, if you’re doing your job properly, the holidays are filled with school work of setting up for the year to follow for example) and take positions of those who genuinely have gotten into teaching for the right reasons.

    So, why I’m here is because I was interested in teaching abroad FULLTIME (I did NOT go to University for four years with a $25000 debt to work casually, not knowing day-to-day whether I’m going to be working or not?), and with that advantage, travelling whilst wherever I was lucky enough to gain employment within.
    The USA??? I don’t know! I have a partner who I know will earn quite a bit and we could collaborate our funds and be doing quite well.
    I have also been given an insight into the students behaviour in the US from you guys. In Australia the behaviour of the students is rapidly deteriorating (due to I believe the pathetic parenting that is occuring within society!!! PARENTS OUT THERE: A lot of YOU are failing in teaching your children basic social skills, even basic life skills- your children NEED to be toilet trained and have oral/verbal skills before coming to school- this is NOT a teacher’s job!) to the extent of violence inflicted on teachers, as well as an extreme lack of respect. However, I enjoy my job a lot. Most days the smiles outweigh the frowns on my behalf!!!

    You’ve given me a lot to think about. I’d love to come explore the USA and teach while I’m there but I noticed $19 000 salary, and that may not have been the minimum? I earnt that here in Australia when I was 15 working at a supermarket casually after school and on weekends!
    I’ll look further into it. Perhaps the UK is more appealing? It’s cold there though- yuck! 😛

  • Jill February 10th, 2010 at 8:06 am 154

    I received my NY teaching certification in 2003. While I have worked several long-term sub positions since then,I have not been able to find a tenure-track position over the past 7 years. There are between 300 – 1,000 applicants for every position that opensin my area (Albany). NY State issues enough teaching certificates each year to replace a third of the entire workforce. I know dozens of teachers who, like me, have been trying to survive with work as a substitue (about $10,000 a year, we all have second jobs to supplement our teaching careers) At this point, I’d settle for any pay. Teacher shortages are a myth.

  • Lisa Lamb February 10th, 2010 at 2:04 pm 155

    I have been teaching since 1994. I started in a Catholic HS in Upstate NY making $13,000/yr teaching 7 classes, 6 preps. I currently teach in Wake County where I make $48,000/yr. I have a Master’s degree and am National Board Certified. I STILL owe $38,000 in student loans,have medical bills up the wazoo, and can’t afford a house in Wake County. I pay $1100/month rent for an apartment. My husband is a math teacher in Durham and make $38,000/yr. We have 3 kids in college. It all depends on where you live – if you can live. BTW, we don not get paid in the summer – we set up a “summer cash” account with our credit union to automtically withdraw from our checks to get through.

  • lcami February 12th, 2010 at 7:10 pm 156

    I know a couple of people with an Education Degree, and have been teaching for years. But they wanted to know how they could make more income for them and there loved ones. They made $35,000 a year, and this wasn’t enough to pay the bills, so she was introduced to an awesome opportunity, now she brings home an extra $5,000 a month. She also shared this opportunity with me as well. And now I’m making more than enough to pay my bills and have extra to do things I enjoy.

  • Diane February 15th, 2010 at 4:11 am 157

    I am sick and tired of hearing teachers complain they don’t make enough money. If they don’t like the pay then find another job. I live in Indiana and the average teachers pay is $47,000+ a year, which is only 180 days that they are in school. Actually, if you take the 11 personal days and 6 sick days they get they are in school only 163 days. If you take $47,000 and divide by 163 you will see they get $288.34 a DAY or $36.04 an hour. I divided that by 8 hours but they don’t really work the 8 hours like most people.
    As for Summer, most teachers get them a job while they are out of school. They will get a job before a student or anyone else.
    Indiana is in a financial woe because of the economy, like most other states. The schools in my district are having to cut their budgets and the schools are wondering where they can cut without laying off teachers. The teachers union will not take a pay cut (like a lot of other workers are having to do) but they want a raise for the teachers. Well, my husband is retired and we would have liked a raise on our Social Security but we didn’t get it. We won’t get a raise for two years. With everything else going up but Social Security we are having to cut our budget a lot.
    Now, get this, our school board is wanting to build a new junior high and renovate the high school. ??????. Where is their common sense-they don’t have any. How do they expect people to pay for it when our unemployment rate is 10%? People are without jobs or loosing their jobs, they are taking pay cuts so they will have a job, businesses are closing, etc. We had a referendum about them wanting this new school and renovating the high school last year. They said it would only cost $98,000,000.00. DAH! They forgot to add the interest to the bill. It was going to be around $200,000,000.00. And the economy like it is. We have three board members who are up for re-election and hopefully they will be gone. Actually, two of them are not running but the one who is said he will bring up the project again when he is allowed (he has to wait one year after the project was voted down before he can bring it up again). Naturally, we are hoping he will not get re-elected and anyone else who wants a new school will not be elected.
    Anyway, my point is- teachers are not underpaid. For no longer they work in a year they are way over paid. My husband never received this kind of money. Well, he did work for Allison’s for a few months but got laid off. He was making good money plus benefits but it didn’t last.
    Oh, I forgot. Teachers also get their retirement paid for by the taxpayers. They pay little on their insurance. We had to put money into a retirement fund if we wanted any retirement. And, we had and still do pay for our own insurance. We pay over $200.00 a month and that is a chunk of money when you are living on retirement and social security. It goes up every year, too. And, he has to pay Medicare and that keeps going up.
    So, don’t feel too sorry for teachers.
    Another thing before I close. Look how smart the kids are today. They aren’t. The schools here have lowered the grading points. When I was in school a 70% was an F, now it’s about a C. Why? Because the kids were failing too much so the grading points were lowered to make it look good.
    Thanks for allowing me to put my 2 cents in, which is about all I have left after paying my bills and we aren’t making $47,000.00+ a year or even 163 days.

  • Debbie February 16th, 2010 at 8:57 pm 158

    Teachers are not overpaid! I know very few teachers who actually can get the job done during the contractual day. Not to mention the hours of planning that teachers do during the summer. Please do a little research before you spout off about something you apparently know very little about.

  • Charlie February 18th, 2010 at 8:40 am 159

    Diane, I do not know if you attended college, or if you have children, or what you and your husband do for a living. I sympathize with your struggles. Many people have had similar struggles these recent years–teachers included. In fact, teachers often face layoffs, pay cuts, or losses of benefits depending on the economic climate and the region, just like other state employees. The average salary for police officers is $49,000/yr, and for fire fighters is $40,000/yr. Where’s your outrage about bloated departments, bad cops, corruption, and incompetence in those fields? Or about how much of your tax money pays for prisons and the food, board, and health care for murderers, rapists, and non-violent drug offenders alike? It is easy to point fingers at teachers, but teaching is a difficult thing to do well, and many teachers work very hard at it and have success. Education is about as important as anything else to this economy, this country. You benefit from strong schools, strong teachers, and strong communities with adequate law enforcement, city services, and good property values. These are the things people look for and move for. You only defeat your own interests when you rant at someone else, as if taking away from them somehow makes your situation better. It does not. We all have been making sacrifices, but we won’t improve things by tearing each other down, we will only do ourselves harm. In hard economic times, quality services are harder to pay for adequately, and people realize the costs of their high living standards. If they want them maintained, they must pay the costs associated with them. We shouldn’t shout at each other about who is responsible for problems. We should rather discuss the issues intelligently and look out for each other’s interests first, so that we may arrive at a solution, instead of an endless rant.

  • Steve February 18th, 2010 at 11:42 pm 160

    Well, you’ve obviously never stepped foot inside a classroom. I guess you’ve never put your life on the line. That’s right – teaching is one of the most dangerous jobs out there! But you wouldn’t think of that living in your little bubble. You’re right about one thing – teacher’s don’t work 8 hours a day – we work more like 12 or 15 hours a day. I don’t suppose you’ve ever created a lesson plan? Well, I don’t need to go any further, it’s quite obvious that you have no idea what you’re talking about! I’ll leave things at that.

  • daniel February 19th, 2010 at 11:38 am 161

    i awalys wanted to find a job but there is no more its like i look and i dont have the one for me and i still look but i find one already and i work now a little bit but its something nice to have job to work i seen and hear peole say that they want to make more money but i still dont knew how do to it idk

  • L. February 19th, 2010 at 7:00 pm 162

    I love when people who have absolutely no clue about teachers or the jobs they have put their “2 cents in”. As a teacher let me also put in MY 2 cents. First, I did not go into teaching for the pay, I decided to become a teacher so I could actually make a difference, which is a phrase I am sure you have heard before. I would teach whatever the pay. However, as far as teacher salary compared to days worked – let me give you a clue. I work in FL which I am sure is similar to Indiana. STUDENTS go to school for 180 days. TEACHERS on the other hand work 196 days. We must actually PLAN what the children will be doing BEFORE school starts, imagine that!! We must also have planning days, workshop days(which are used to help us become better teachers) and other days where the children don’t go to school, but we do.
    As for the sick days and personal days, we only get 10 days, sick or personal, where I am from. Most good teachers don’t take that many. When a teacher calls in sick they must PLAN FOR WHAT WILL HAPPEN WHILE THEY ARE OUT. We don’t have the luxury of calling in sick and being worry free. When I call in sick, I get up at 5:00 am, write my lesson plans and drive to my school to drop them off. Sick or not, I must still make sure my students will get the best learning they can get.
    And lest not forget, the old cliche, you “ONLY work until 3 or 4”. My dear Diane, I might TEACH until 3:00. But try grading 5 subjects (reading, math, science, social studies and writing-in case you don’t remember) worth of tests, papers, projects, etc. weekly while you are in school WITH the children. I bring home more homework than your children probably ever will see on a nightly basis AND BELIEVE IT OR NOT, I DO NOT GET PAID OVERTIME TO DO THIS!!!! Unlike “most people” who work 8 hrs. a day. However, instead of complaining about it, I usually take it in stride, realizing that there will always be people who don’t have a clue. Usually, I hold my tongue, but in this case I can’t hold it any longer.
    I give you a challenge, Diane, go to your local school and volunteer to take over the teacher’s job for 1 week (including planning, teaching, monitoring 24-30 students behavior at all times, no bathroom breaks, no sitting down, grading papers, PE duty, making sure children actually attempt to learn and do the work assigned and actually listening to the students because you care about their live OUTSIDE of school when most of their parents do not). After that has been done, let me know me know how under appreciated and degraded you feel from clueless people who wouldn’t be able to have the jobs THEY have if not for a group of selfless teachers!!!!!!

  • Lee February 19th, 2010 at 9:58 pm 163

    Yeah but your saying that they make 5x minimum wage but see it’s not just a job it’s a career and it all depends on cost of living as well which is why teachers up north make up to 60-80 thousand a year. You can’t compare careers to jobs, seriously if you did that with everything (to switch it around) we’d have a hell of a lot more kids/that is college-aged wanting to be plumbers huh..look at what they make. It’s the fact that compared to other careers, especially some that are in some cases entry-level jobs teachers should be making more, and then looking at it as far as the classes of people and taxes and such, it’s like the less teachers make the worse the schools/areas and that’s more correlation than a direct cause and effect. I’m 20 and I know quite a few people my age majoring in education and I can say that never would I be one of them, and summer vacation argument please you have to actually have some credentials updated through classes every few years don’t you which comes from your pocket, something to do with keeping up with being certified, correct me if I’m wrong. No thanks I’ll stick with my plan of going into the “science/medical field” you know because the jobs are apparently limitless and actually pay something, and not just if your a nurse or doctor either, and by pay something I mean atleast 50,000. This reminds me of when people around me in my senior year of high school class were so shocked that the Median income for married couple with 2.2 kids/what have you makes 80,000 total and this one girl who’s planning to be a gynecologist asked if my teacher meant each, of course that was at Irmo HS in District 5 in Cola,SC and the stats were for the state but still it just goes to show you that when your young and live in a place where everyone seems to care about higher education that college-educated only means 40,000, not that 40,000 is really low but you just want something more and think what do I have to become a laywer/doctor to get more or should I stick with something less obvious and for what I think I’d actually enjoy doing, because everyone’s not cut out to be nor wants to be a doctor or a laywer…

  • Lee February 19th, 2010 at 10:34 pm 164

    I mean seriously there’s no way in hell I’d be a teacher especially since everytime you go to a different state you have to be certified there, and there’s no way I would live anywhere in SC long term except for Charleston where I’m from originally and even then the only teaching job I think would even be worth it would be teaching at a montosouri school because I attended a private one of those for 3 yrs, from age 3-6 and I actually remember it and I like how they’re structured there more than normal elementary schools. Speaking of that why the hell do so many “smart kids” in my class settle for usc or clemson when they could have out of state scholarships. wait maybe it has something to do with being born and raised in Irmo and I just don’t get it because I’m a naitive charlestonian but I’d go to somewhere more prestigious for around the same cost, because those schools that say 20-30 grand out of state most of them give A LOT of Financial Aid and not just Need Baised either. Of course I go to CofC and there’s a comfort in knowing that my parents are just two hrs away but being close to people I went to highschool with/my parents wouldn’t even factor in I’d look at all that a school has to offer/what I want out of my life, of course there’s always graduate school for the WAY more prestigious schools “ie, Princeton,etc. if someone’s exceptionally succesful as an undergrad. but often times, looking at my brother’s friends, who just graduated college and some who are looking at med. schools, which includes a couple who have near 4.0 gpas people in this state (sc) tend to think that the only money option is in state all the way, when simply that isn’t true. I’m not saying that our state’s college’s aren’t up to par I’m just saying that they aren’t the only option especially for the select few who could actually cut it at say MIT or Hopkins,Columbia,Fordham,etc. and even just those who say they want to get out of here, or away from here for school but insist they can’t because of money issues. Yes, I’m middle class, and not upper middle class either, and only ranked in the top 30% of my class but I find myself lost with their logic, and although I am attending an inner state school for my undergrad it’s because I know it’s good and it’s tied for #1 in the country for Undergrad. in the major I’m interested in Chemistry, but you can bet your money on it that if I’d actually take AP tests etc. and applied to out of state even as far as the Other USC, you know in California that I’d just as soon CONSIDER going there if I thought it would be challenging/worth my while of course I know that you don’t have to be in the top 20 or 30 to get into perfectly good colleges whether they’re in state or not although the general census it seemed when I was in HS was that you had to be taking 4-6 ap classes to HOPE that you could when simply that’s just bull, of course if your going for prestige it wouldn’t hurt but still I fail to see the logic. Also for my younger years I actually pondered on becoming a teacher but once I hit secondary school that idea was long gone and I thought that as wealthy as that district was that there’s no way I’d ever be a teacher there, and no my reasons for wanting/pondering of getting “the hell of of dodge” don’t have to do with political reasons becuase trust me I was “raised baptist’ and am more conservative than anything it’s just I see so many things that could use improvement in SC that have already been addressed in other states or cities that I would want to live in and sense there’s no way I would ever be in the political field or seek out a job that could allow me to offer suggestions to our law makers/legislation/congress I figure that I might as well see what else is out there to put it frank.

  • Lee February 19th, 2010 at 10:50 pm 165

    Oh also I just found this site because a longtime friend of mine is an education major and she’s minoring in Spanish*she’s just good at it no family background*, to which I should say to her be a college spanish teacher if anything so you know the people who are there are there because they want to learn it, that or be an elementary/middle school because with her personality I could see her getting kids interested in speaking any foreign language, whether it be spanish or those that aren’t even taught here or having those same kids in a couple of years look back and say yeah I took spanish because I was forced to but I actually enjoyed it and it would be so cool to learn another language fluently, yes that last one’s a little stretch and in many cases is what Rosetta Stone’s for rather than those kids later taking Spanish as an elective in College,or any foreign language if it’s not a requirement but I could seriously see her having a profound effect on her students at any level. The other reason for me commenting is that, especially as a college-aged person, I’m quite curious as to what teachers everywhere have to say on this issue.

  • michelle February 22nd, 2010 at 2:37 pm 166

    teachers work 12 hr days the papers that go hom the scheduels that need to be corrected the tests that need to be graded the lesson plans that need to be developed and differentiated for those individual students that are on different grade levels but included in the class as part of no child left behind. The professional development that FORCES you to pursue degrees heightr that what you may have initially wanted to o r for that matter can afford. Look get your facts together. And by the way teachers pay into their own pensions

  • Suresh February 23rd, 2010 at 11:32 am 167

    Dear Diane,

    Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education – John F.Canady.

    Teachers can change the course of a nation !


  • Joe February 23rd, 2010 at 1:06 pm 168

    If you had paid attention to the teachers you had then possibly you would not sound quite so quasi literate. Please don’t attempt to down grade teachers for your own inabilities.

  • ann February 25th, 2010 at 7:45 am 169

    have you ever worked in a school or dealt with children on a daily basis? If you have’nt then your comment is unfair to those of us (teachers) who work hard and are good at what we do. Teachers have to put up with crap from students as well as parents that simply have no respect for you or themselves.You can’t comment on what you have not gone through or experienced

  • Matt March 1st, 2010 at 12:20 am 170

    Wow, I can not believe my eyes! Too many of our teachers are big cry babies! You knew what the profession is about before you started your teaching program (if you didn’t, whose fault is it that you did not research your future career?) You knew what the salary schedules are in every district, usually posted on line or easily obtained from the district office. You knew how many days teachers work. You knew all or most of the variables affecting your career, tax revenues dictate school funding, boards can set their own “agendas”, etc. T

    There are NO surprises in education, you made the choice fully informed. I earned a business degree and worked in middle management of manufacturing firms for twelve years, long hours, constant pressure, accountibility, etc. JUST like a teacher! OH, I forgot, I had two to four weeks off per year! I made the choice to change careers and became an elementary teacher. I took a 50 % paycut, love every second of it. Now in my fifth year I would not give it up for anything.

    Based on the priniples of free market economy, our position pays EXACTLY what it should, when the salary becomes too low, not enough people will choose the profession and salaries will go up.

    Last point, (almost done 🙂 The issue of teacher unions, until we get reid of unions, our ed system will remain broken. Unions protect poor performing teachers and allow them to stay in the system for much too long. Merit based pay is the only way to go.

    For info only my district in So. Ca works 183 student days, 2 teacher prep days. BA and 5 years gets you about $47,000. Top elem. teacher in my district makes close to 85,000.

  • I Lind March 8th, 2010 at 12:11 pm 171

    Panama bound couldn’t be more right. I have been coaching Principals and AP’s and teachers in the NY Metropolitan area for years after being a Special Education teacher myself. WHile teachers and administrators deal with student behavioral difficulties which they really shouldn’t have too. Their pay for half a year on the job and not even working an 8 hour day is amazing. Tenure? Why what other professions/ jobs have that? The only people who rally against charter schools are union supported teachers in an effort to save their jobs. For the most part Elementary school staff care and try but Junior high and HS its all about their jobs and not the “children”

  • Heidi April 2nd, 2010 at 8:12 am 172

    This if for those of you who complain about teach pay: How much do you pay for childcare for when you are working? In our state it is about $5 per hour or about $200 per week. Just pay me the SAME! I have 31 students each day, multiply that by $5 per hour. That would be $155 per hour. Now, multiply that by 7 hours per day. That would be $1085 per day. Now times 5 days per week…we are looking at $5425 per week!! Our salaries are now looking pretty low aren’t they.

  • on a journey April 5th, 2010 at 3:29 pm 173

    I am setting out on a journey to become a teacher. I am 26 married and have two kids. I am in my first year of college. I want to become a teacher to help students with their lives, in and out of the classroom. Being that Iwas abused as a child, my only reliance was school, and no one there helped me. I dont want to be the teacher who ignores a situation when teh signs of abuse are so apparent. I really want to make a difference and help kids. The only people I trusted growing up is myt teachers, and I know a lot about abuse and and the signs of abuse. I want to help kids when no one else will. Being that my husband will no longer be able to work here in the next few years due to personal reasons, I will be the sole provider for a family of four, includingt some pretty high medical bills I am sure we will have by then. I live in CA and I am hoping I will be able to support my family on a teachers’ wages.

  • Megan April 10th, 2010 at 12:13 am 174

    3rd year teacher 32,000. Vail/Aspen area, so my rent is $800 a month. But wait- my student loan payments each month are $825!!!!

  • Megan April 10th, 2010 at 12:20 am 175

    But Matt I agree with you- districts keep bad teachers way to long! they need to find a way to fire them! It pisses me off. for three years now I have produced amazing scores for my district. (when you know how to teach and the students can retain what they learned, you get the scores)

    My personal opinion about teachers who don’t care about standardized testing – it’s because they can’t produce good scores from the students they teach.

    I do NOT teach to the test. I teach exactly what the state of Colorado tells me every 8th grader needs to know. Boost their confidence in themselves when it comes to math and they rock on their scores.

    My first year teaching I was given 100 students, 60 of them failed their math test at the forth grade level. 86 of my 100 students passed at the 5th grade level!

    But, I go without eating dinner sometimes, haven’t bought new clothes in over 5 years, haven’t bought Christmas presents for my family in 3 years because I struggle with my paycheck. But would I change jobs just for the money- never! I knew what I was getting into.

  • CAY April 12th, 2010 at 2:16 pm 176

    Dear Classy6, Annie, Diane, ILind, Panamabound, Pregnant Republication, and Stamie (and any other negative commenter I may have missed):

    Both my parents were teachers. My father was a Jr. high science and math teacher, and my mother was a kindergarten, first, second and third grade teacher. My mother, whose name is engraved on a plaque in the Library of Congress as a Teacher of the Year, ended her career in the late 90’s making approximately $30 thousand per year. She had a four-year degree, a two-year teaching credential, numerous credits accumulated over her 20 plus year teaching career, as well as the numerous accolades of her superiors, her peers, her students’ parents, and most importantly, her students.

    Neither of my parents worked eight hours a day, five days a week during the school year. In fact, they usually had more homework than either my brother or I did. My father always made himself available after classes to tutor struggling students and provided transportation home when they missed the bus. He also spent numerous evenings on the phone (on his dime) with the parents of students who were not doing well. This was in addition to the required parent/teacher interaction. They both spent hours in the evening and on weekends preparing for class, grading papers, etc. When parents of my mother’s students could not make it to parent-teacher conferences, she went to their homes. This was all in addition to the mandatory meetings and workshops. They also spent a great deal of their own money buying school supplies that their cash-strapped school districts could not afford. My parents loved teaching, and never regretted the low pay and long hours.

    When considering the amount teachers are paid, you must include the level of education required, the true number of hours work, the energy and effort required to teach 20 to 30 students at a time, and the level of responsibility. Teachers are to a large extent responsible for the future of our country – the education of our children.

    I also find it difficult to believe that anyone working in a profession that requires a college education makes approximately $12,000 per year. You need to compare apples to apples, not apples to oranges. How much does a hedge fund manager earn and what real value does said manager add to our society as a whole? Compare his or her earnings to those a teacher.

    Are there teachers who slide by? Absolutely. There are people in every profession who slide by. However, I don’t recall hearing that used as a justification for inadequate compensation to all members of that profession.

    The negative comments regarding teacher compensation sound like misdirected anger. Where is the anger regarding the out-of-control compensation for the CEO’s of US public corporations, star athletes, and media stars. Really, who works hard enough to justify their annual salaries? NO ONE!

  • Amir April 16th, 2010 at 1:22 pm 177

    I have a master’s degree in Natural Resource Sciences; lived for 30 years in Germany; can speak, write, and read Persian, German, and English. I live in Georgia, and I am 51. I founded a language center back in Germany, with 45 young students; I taught and supervised. I switched everything and I would love to become a certified teacher in the U.S. I see a lot of professionals on this website. What would you recommend? Where should I start? What would be the first step? Thanks a lot for your advice.

  • saw April 16th, 2010 at 8:17 pm 178

    After reading through these posts, I feel compelled to say something. I am a special education teacher in upstate New York. I get very frustrated when people who are not teachers claim that we are whiny or overpaid when we defend our salaries or would like to see an increase. Here’s why:
    In NY, you are REQUIRED to get a Master’s degree within five years of receiving your initial teaching degree in order to keep your teaching certification. So, I graduated from college four years ago with my initial teaching certification, and because of the high number of applicants and low number of jobs in this state, I was forced to take a job teaching at HeadStart making $17000 dollars a year for two years (a wonderful program, but I had a bachelor’s degree and was making almost NOTHING). I had $40000 of student loan debt at the time. I began my master’s degree, taking out more loans because I couldn’t pay out of pocket (because I was making no money), and I HAD to begin my degree in order to keep my certification. Then, to try and get in with a school district to have any chance of beating out the other thousands of people applying for jobs, I took a year-long internship that paid $15000. I finished my Master’s degree in June, and finally, this year, I’m in a job that matches my qualifications, training and degrees in a good district making $43,000.
    Now, the reason this bothers me is because I’m $70,000 in debt JUST to be allowed to teach in the state of New York. Most other professions will pay for you to get an advanced degree or at least pay you about $20,000 more for having it. I spent $30,000 for a degree that only increased my pay scale by $2,000. Yes; I went to school an extra two years and paid an extra $30,000 just so New York can call me a “highly qualified teacher” under NCLB, and then I only get a ONE TIME $2,000 stipend.
    Now, I know that I didn’t get into teaching for the money; I work with students with severe disabilities, and I make a difference every day and I wouldn’t change it for anything. And I EARN that money: tantrums, physical attacks by students, making and following individual plans for EVERY student, endless parents and meetings and paperwork, an extra 2-3 hours a night doing planning and behavioral assessments, IEPs, paperwork, etc. And I would never trade jobs, because I am excellent at my job and it’s truly rewarding (and I’ve spent $70,000 and 6 years of my life being trained for it). But I think it’s ridiculous that my state requires me to pay that much up front just to be allowed to teach, and then doesn’t compensate AT ALL on the other side. With my level of training and experience in any other field, I would be making tens of thousands of dollars more. Instead, I’m drowning in student loan debt and can barely afford my bills just because I WANT to be a teacher… THAT’s what bothers me.

  • saw April 16th, 2010 at 8:32 pm 179

    Oh, and please stop saying teachers only work 6 hours a day for 9 months. Schools are very different now than they used to be, and I DON’T think most teachers realize what they are getting themselves into based on the preparation we’re given in college (though most of us become so dedicated to our students that we don’t dare leave or reconsider professions once we know the truth). The responsibilities of the teachers are far more than just teaching and educating; we’re parents, therapists, doctors, etc. Most of the parents in the districts I’ve worked with baby their children to the point where teachers are always in the wrong and are expected to walk the children through everything; these kids are no longer held accountable for their learning or work, and the blame is consistently placed on us when the child isn’t doing well, even though we’re finding 15-20 min to help that child, one-on-one every day even though we have 28 other students (and that child’s never the only one; there’s always at least 3 or 4). Add on top of that the addiction to video games and television that have just destroyed nearly every child’s attention span, and you can imagine how hard we have to work just to push one concept into a child’s mastery.
    Personally, my school year is over 10 months long. I get to school at 8:00 every day and leave at 4:30 and work EVERY MINUTE I’m there (meetings with other teachers, prepping for the day, meeting with or returning phone calls to parents, etc. are the things I am rushing around doing before and after the students are there). I spend hours at night planning, and more sleepless hours worrying about my students from poor home lives, and the kids with severe cognitive and emotional problems, worried that I can’t do enough to help them all. When I see parents in public, I get dragged into half hour conversations about their child’s progress and issues (this is my own private time, remember). I also teach summer school, meaning I really only get about 2-3 weeks off a year, most of which is spent planning and getting ready for the next upcoming week of the school year. True teachers are “working” 24-7; we never truly have time off.
    So please, have some respect for our profession. I don’t comment on other professions because I haven’t been involved enough in the day to day experiences of these professionals and felt that I truly had the perspective to do so; please have the same courtesy for teachers. Thank you.

  • Stacy April 17th, 2010 at 7:14 pm 180

    I read every post, which would seem like I have plenty of time. That really isn’t the truth. I am amazed by some of the absurd comments that have been made during this discussion. I am new to the teaching profession. I am an 8th grade reading teacher in Florida. I still love my job to an extent, but there are things that some of you have mentioned that are wrong, and responses that have only covered about half of the issue.

    For starters, teachers in Florida with a BA/BS start out at about 37000 a year depending on the district. Many districts do cover health care for the teacher, but not the family. We get 10 days off a year for sick and only some of that time can be used as personal time. We do not get paid for Thanksgiving break, Christmas break, Spring Break or Summer Break. Basically, a teacher can have a percentage of their check put back for Summer, but it does come from the time that the teacher has already worked. The other breaks are covered by another route. Every pay period one day of teaching is taken to cover those holidays breaks, so basically during an 80 hour pay period a teacher gets paid only for 72 hours. No other type of benefits are offered, and very little additional pay is offered. I am not here by any means to complain about the pay. I do believe teachers should get paid more, but only due to the hours put in. Every other field is required to pay time and a half for overtime by federal law, but teachers do not get that right. Why is that?

    Now that I have mentioned some of the basic facts as far as Florida is concerned, I work well over 8 hours a day. I am required to be at work at 8:25 and I am required to stay on campus until 4:25. Do the math and you can see that is exactly 8 hours. It is also required to be on campus at 8 every Tuesday for meetings. In addition, I was recently told by my principal that I needed to improve my lessons, and I responded that I was utilizing my conference period as well as working some in the evenings. My principal responded that lesson plans take longer than what can be accomplished in one conference period, so 8 hour days is a myth to say the least.

    The biggest thing that bothered me is the fact that many of you assume that everything is known about a field prior. While I agree that it is easy enough to find out pay scale prior, and benefit information including health care and sick leave, it is impossible to know everything about an employer or field before getting involved. I had no way of knowing that taking my position would mean working 12 hour days and half my weekend. I also more importantly did not realize that the politics in teaching were so bad. The principal has all of the power in the school, and if you have a principal that has favorites then you may have a problem. I agree that educators are in some instances setting bad examples, but that is the case for all adults not just educators. Our children are modeling our behavior, and we are blaming the educators. Little Johnny didn’t improve his reading this year, so the teacher must not be teaching him. Well could it be that Little Johnny is to blame at some point? I mean Little Johnny sits there without a pencil or paper, and refuses to do the work. You call the parents, and their response is that they can’t do anything about it, or the parents never return your call. Yet, when the principal enters your classroom it is your fault that Little Johnny will not do anything, and when the test results from the FCAT come back it is the teacher’s fault that Little Johnny didn’t improve. In the state of Florida 8th graders are not required to take reading unless they fail or score low on the FCAT. If they score low or fail and are required to take reading then they end up in a class like mine. Here is the kicker though, they are required to take my class, they hate reading, I am held accountable not them for their improvement on test scores, but they do not have to pass the class or the FCAT. Where is the student’s accountability or the parents?

    I will tell you this, I love my students, and on the last day of school I will probably cry with my students. My students love me, and talk to me every chance that they get. I do not get frustrated about my job due to my students. I get frustrated with my job due to the politics and the ignorance of the adults. The fact is that for the amount of hours put into teaching, teachers are underpaid. The comment made about middle school and high school teachers not caring is a load of crap. Only a compassionate person can handle a bunch of hormonal teens that just about hate life at their present time. I can guarantee that most of the teachers that I know work their tails off trying to help our students improve, and it is not just about my job it’s only about the children.

    It was also mentioned in another post about lunches, we do get a half an hour lunch, but the average teacher uses the lunch time for making copies, checking in with other teachers, and checking in with parents. Teachers do not get bathroom breaks at all, and teachers do not get two 15 minute breaks like everyone else in every other job like required by federal law. We receive on conference or lesson planning period that is one hour long a day to take care of everything. That one hour includes our two 15 minute breaks as well. During that time we have to create lesson plans, take care of paperwork, make copies, call parents, have conferences with parents, grade papers, enter papers into the online system, conference with other teachers if necessary, meetings, and all other issues that tend to come up. I guarantee it is not enough time to get everything accomplished that is necessary.

    One last thing, the fact of the matter is that we choose jobs and career based on our strengths and enjoyments, but the first and foremost reason for choosing a job or career is financial restitution. If we did not need to work we would not work, and that can be said for almost all of us in life. If we could just volunteer or hang out with friends and family then most of us would. We choose teaching to make a difference, but like with any job we expect to be compensated, so that we like everyone else can pay our bills. I have a nice house, but only due to some luck and a lot of help from friends. That being said, I am a single mother with four children of my own, and I became a teacher due to that reason. I must say though that as a child I wanted to be a teacher, so my circumstances just pushed me in the right direction. I do not receive any support from my ex-husband, so we live completely on my salary as a teacher. I can not make the bills on just my salary due to childcare costs for my children, so I also run the before and after school program at our school. I am currently at my school from 7am-6pm, and then I go home to work an additional 2+ hours on grading, lesson planning and other items. I try my best to still be there for my own children. The biggest issue is that I end up with a lack of time, so I end up with a lack of sleep. I average 5 hours of sleep a night if I am lucky, and the week before Spring break I was averaging 2-3 hours of sleep a night all week. I work for the money I make, which can easily be seen. I am not saying that I think that we should be paid more per hour. I am saying that teachers should be compensated for the extra hours that they work. To everyone out there that is a teacher, I wish you the best of luck in your future, and to all of you wishing to be teachers good luck and beware that there is a lot of politics involved. To everyone that is hating on teachers, why is it that teachers are held responsible for everything that a child learns? I guess it is as equally absurd as holding a parent completely responsible. We can only lead them and guide them, but ultimately a child will make a choice. If a child makes a bad choice the child should be held responsible. We no longer as a society hold children accountable for anything that they do, so why do we get surprised when they act insane?

  • Shay April 22nd, 2010 at 11:53 am 181

    I became an educator as a 2nd career choice. I grew up in a family of educators–parent, aunts, and uncles. I thought is was going to be an easy job and allow me summers to spend with my children and family. I was wrong…though rewarding, it is the hardest job I have ever had in my life. From reading the post of others, especially 179 and 180, they are 100% correct of their assessment of the educational systems, requirements, etc.

    Because I used to be perfectionist and wanted to make sure I did everything I could for my students, I worked from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. every day for a complete school year. Needless to say, I was a very successful teacher, but I wasn’t there for my own children because I was trying to do my job. That was 11 years ago, I took a $12,000 pay cut to get into the profession and in SC ll years later, I am just a little above what I made in 1999 working for a private employer.

    Now, I am burned out, stress levels beyond control, older, the economy is in turmoil, and I NEED to get out. I am considering other career paths…Information Systems, Medical Informatics, etc. I love my students, but the stress of this type of job does not love me. I am in good physical shape, but my health is deteriorating fast.

  • Rose April 23rd, 2010 at 8:11 am 182

    I am not a teacher but I am so much in agreement with you comments. I do not have children but I think parent should be held accountable as well. My brother has a B.A. and he works at night. During the day, he sleeps, gets up, watch CNN and then soaps. He picks up the kids from school and returns to watching CNN. He could use this time to help with homework or assist with giving his children a head start.

    I have a Masters degree and while my career path is different, I tell you, I work my tail off only to make $28.000 yearly. The bottom line is, we are literally forced into working more for less because if we quit, someone will be right there to pick up where we left off. This is modern day slavery.

    I am so much in agreement with your comments. Another issue I have with FL is the fact that the state requires certification in literally every field of service and these certifications cost $ yet the compensation does not equal the payoffs.

    Teachers must not be held accountable when a child fail to learn. I am going on 42 and I am still terrible when it comes to math and science and I have a grad. degree and graduated with honors during grad. and undergrad. Some people will never be good at certain subjects. What schools should be allowed to do is to help children strengthen what they are good at. Not all of us will be lawyers and doctors.

  • ME in USA May 4th, 2010 at 9:41 am 183

    Let’s be sensible. Today, NJ teachers are doing quite well, for the 6 hours a day about 180 days a year. It can be argued that they take home weekend work and after school work; however, teachers usually have breaktime during each day when ’specials’ such as art, music, library, phys. ed. computer ed. relieve them for a period. Without taking weekends into consideration, they have 81 days per year of ‘paid’ vacation and holidays. The average worker in the US gets about 14 days. In NJ teachers eaarn an ‘average’ somewhere between $55,000 and $60,000, and rank only 3rd below Ct. and CA.

  • mr. JAy May 10th, 2010 at 2:43 pm 184

    hello I am a 10th grade high school student that has a passion for English education. i have already to attend college for becoming and English teacher but I do not like the pay. Teachers are the sole creators of other professions. by this I mean if it were not for teachers there would not be anyone in any profession!!!! Because someone had to teach them what they know!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Shelton J. May 11th, 2010 at 1:49 pm 185

    Hello everyone I am currrently a sophomore and rising junior that has a deep passion for educating others. I plan to attend Alabama State University with a double major in English Education and performing Arts. I love English and I am really great in the subject. I love educating others but as far as the salary it is horrific. The reason I say that is because if it were not for educators there would not be anyone in any other profession. If it were not for educators they would not know what they know if that particular area. In addition to that as a rising junior I feel that educators should have a higher salary. it is a crying disgrace that the people who educate are ranked number 7 on the lowest paid salaries. Although I plan to work until I become a Professor of English a a great institution for learning, those who teach have it the hardest. Yes, I understand that it is our choice to go into the education field but,educators are the basic building blocks for the FUTURE!!!! Teachers mold mind when children and young adults are in the most critical stages. During you elementary, middle, and secondary school years TEACHERS are the parents to everyones children. In addition to that I feel certified teachers should be some of the highest paid people in THE United States of America!!!!! It is such a shame how the U.S. but teachers salary in some of the lowest %tiles. If people in the government professions actaully looked at it they would see they did not get where they are if it were not for someone teaching them what they know. Teachers work their buts off to provide students with a high quality education and are paid like they have the easiest job in the world. Then the overnement tends to forget how hard it is to become a certified teacher.(Praxis and ect.) In conclusion I am saying people should really understand that teachers are to sole foundation for success and should be paid more for what they do!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • SUE ARMSTRONG May 11th, 2010 at 7:24 pm 186

    I taught elementary school in Utah and Montana–10 years of kindergarten (MS degree in Child Development from Utah State University)4 years of Fourth Grade, 2 years of Third, and 13 years of Second Grade. I worked from 7:30 to 5:00 and often used my lunch hour for planning meetings with team teachers or to tutor children having difficulty with reading. My salary stayed the same from years 17 to 24 and stayed the same again from years 25 to 29 finally @$50,000 with additional $4000 for extra duty and curriculum projects. In addition I had 70 credit hours (enough for a second Master’s degree) earned taking classes on Friday evenings and Saturdays. I taught year-round school except for the last twenty years. I was under-paid for the services I provided.

  • Mike C May 13th, 2010 at 6:06 am 187

    Let’s be honest – teachers do not get a PAID vacation, they get paid for 10 months. If they worked 12 months the salary would be much higher. Second, teachers can make a nice living…after 20 years of service. $100k is a good, not great living, in NJ. Sure teachers can get there, with 18+ years of service and a Master’s Degree. There is this common misconception that teachers wake up and fall into a job at $56,000. Tell me where that happens without either years of service (referred to as steps on the guide) or additional education? The average STARTING salary in NJ for a BA is closer to $42k.

    Lastly (because I have to work today from 7:30 until 4pm and then go back at night for a program), teachers are not on the clock for only 6 hours a day. Give me a break. Any successful (I say successful) teacher worth their salt is working their tails off beyond school hours. Where do you think effective planning occurs? During a 45 minute prep? You think that is enough time to plan 6 lessons for one day of Kindergarten? My gf is a kindergarten teacher and is working at night almost every week night, planning, making props for teacher, grading papers (even if it is a star sticker), talking to parents, emails, etc.

    I am a guidance counselor – when the recommendations get written? During the day when I see parents and students and teachers? What about night programs? Think we don’t have to go them? Give me a break. I don’t mind contributing to my benefits, but I deserve some respect for the field I have chosen. I don’t want a bigger piece of the puzzle, I want the profession to floursh, become a career that other, young students can feel proud of working towards. We don’t want more money, we want to continue helping YOUR children become educated and productive members of society..as we have been doing for years.

    You didn’t become literate because your mother taught you to read (most of you). You had teachers and professionals help you along the way. Don’t forget that. Sad part is, we will still teach your kids tomorrow, even if Christie takes away our money…because we love what we do.

  • Rach Benny May 14th, 2010 at 6:32 pm 188

    ‘The cow never knows the use of his tail until he loses it.’ Wait until some of you lose your job then you will be grateful for what you have. I work in Kingston, Jamaica and the average teacher with three year teaching diploma and B.A or B.Ed earns about US1300 before tax – 25% tax. I take home about US1100 monthly, family or not, after 8 years in the system. Talk about underpaid and overworked dealing with so many students who have become enemies of learning.

  • Victoria May 24th, 2010 at 8:04 pm 189

    everyone who says teachers are overpaid, well the only thing i have to say to you is you OBVIOUSLY do not know what teachers have to go through every single day. they deal with YOUR child when you dont want to. if you are so unhappy with the educational system then home-school your child. and deal with your own problems on your own terms. no one wants to listen to you complain about how unhappy you are with teachers salary, which in reality, is LOW. wake up, and do research before you leave your “2 Cents”.

  • cole May 27th, 2010 at 11:34 am 190

    are preschool teachers in demand in USA?

  • Teresa May 28th, 2010 at 8:10 pm 191

    Let me start off by saying that I student taught my senior year in college at the high school I graduated from on Long Island so I do have some insight as to what teachers do. My cooperating teachers, both of whom had been teaching for over 30 years used to practically run out of the building after the last class because they didn’t want to get stuck behind the busses in the parking lot. So they left school at 1:25. I know for a fact that they did the bare minimum in terms of work outside of school which meant only grading papers because I know they used the same lesson plans that they’ve been using for years. The teachers themselves actually turned me off of teaching as a profession. I’ll never forget being in the student lounge and talking to them about wanting to make my lesson plans more active and creative to engage the students and they told me that we are not performers. We teach and if they don’t pay attention that’s their problem. They were so morose and bitter. For those teachers who say they work 60 hours a week I say unless you are a relatively new teacher who is developing his/her lesson plans for the first time you are lying. And btw, I live in Bergen County, NJ and work in an investment bank, commute 1.5 hours to work and make $80,000/yr – far less than most teachers who also get a sweet commute and pensions.

  • Greg May 29th, 2010 at 4:51 am 192

    First teachers if you don’t like it quit. You knew what you would make when you started. An Ed degree is not hard to get, compared to say Physics, mathematics, engineering or Medical Doctor. When you throw in time off, pension and salary, plus unions that protect you incompetent teachers… why whine. Go get that dream job making $120,000 if you think you are qualified for something else.

    PS: for “crikey” April 24th, 2008 “you should all emigrate. teachers’ salaries average $70,000 in the uk”

    A simple google search shows the limey is a lying. UK teachers make about $35K USD a year.

  • Mark June 3rd, 2010 at 11:29 am 193

    considering how poorly teachers perform in the districts available to my kid, i should homeschool him. too many teachers simply work for the tenure and quit. they should be paid on performance, not experience. a lazy teacher is an overpaid teacher! i agree that base salary is low and it discourages young people who have the potential to give back to the community through good teaching. i don’t care if lousy teachers get low pay. a lousy manager at McDonalds is not rewarded for poor performance and neither should tenured teachers. victoria, quit glorifying the teacher for his or her title and demand performance and results in exchange for tenure!

  • evalove June 4th, 2010 at 12:30 pm 194

    I am not a teacher but I greatly appreciate teachers. I am a stay-at-home mom & my husband sometimes says ” I feel like i work w/ children” My reply is well I do work w/ children. I keep in mind this is ten fold for teachers. I imagine it is difficult, all the personalities & family dynamic differences X 2 dozen plus. People should keep in mind how they feel just dealing w/ their small brood each day. They should probably imagine an ongoing family reunion w/ every imaginable relative in sight. Yea, teachers are not paid enough. Thank you.

  • Shock & Awe June 7th, 2010 at 1:40 am 195

    Just wanted to put my two cents in. (1). For the posters who rag on the teaching profession, clearly you have NO IDEA what it takes to be a good teacher. It is this disrespect from our fellow Americans that allows teachers to be treated poorly on a continual basis. (2). As far as salaries are concerned, this website is misleading. THE STATE AND DISTRICT MATTER A LOT. Additionally, the cost of living is important.

    I just signed a contract for the 2010 – 2011 academic year. I’m going to be a first year teacher and will make $81,000.00 at a suburban public high school near Chicago. Why such a high starting salary? I have a BA, JD and MAEd. I applied to schools with salary schedules which rewarded me for having advanced degrees. Bottom line: To live comfortably working your butt off teaching (which you will if you want to be a good teacher), (a). DO YOUR RESEARCH ON SALARY SCHEDULES AND DO NOT FOLLOW INFORMATION ON WEBSITES LIKE THIS and (b). Get as many advanced degrees as possible in the field you are planning to teach in. Good luck.

  • ARACELY June 11th, 2010 at 10:03 am 196

    I read every post, which would seem like I have plenty of time. That really isn’t the truth. I am amazed by some of the absurd comments that have been made during this discussion. I am new to the teaching profession. I am an 8th grade reading teacher in Florida. I still love my job to an extent, but there are things that some of you have mentioned that are wrong, and responses that have only covered about half of the issue.

    For starters, teachers in Florida with a BA/BS start out at about 37000 a year depending on the district. Many districts do cover health care for the teacher, but not the family. We get 10 days off a year for sick and only some of that time can be used as personal time. We do not get paid for Thanksgiving break, Christmas break, Spring Break or Summer Break. Basically, a teacher can have a percentage of their check put back for Summer, but it does come from the time that the teacher has already worked. The other breaks are covered by another route. Every pay period one day of teaching is taken to cover those holidays breaks, so basically during an 80 hour pay period a teacher gets paid only for 72 hours. No other type of benefits are offered, and very little additional pay is offered. I am not here by any means to complain about the pay. I do believe teachers should get paid more, but only due to the hours put in. Every other field is required to pay time and a half for overtime by federal law, but teachers do not get that right. Why is that?

    Now that I have mentioned some of the basic facts as far as Florida is concerned, I work well over 8 hours a day. I am required to be at work at 8:25 and I am required to stay on campus until 4:25. Do the math and you can see that is exactly 8 hours. It is also required to be on campus at 8 every Tuesday for meetings. In addition, I was recently told by my principal that I needed to improve my lessons, and I responded that I was utilizing my conference period as well as working some in the evenings. My principal responded that lesson plans take longer than what can be accomplished in one conference period, so 8 hour days is a myth to say the least.

    The biggest thing that bothered me is the fact that many of you assume that everything is known about a field prior. While I agree that it is easy enough to find out pay scale prior, and benefit information including health care and sick leave, it is impossible to know everything about an employer or field before getting involved. I had no way of knowing that taking my position would mean working 12 hour days and half my weekend. I also more importantly did not realize that the politics in teaching were so bad. The principal has all of the power in the school, and if you have a principal that has favorites then you may have a problem. I agree that educators are in some instances setting bad examples, but that is the case for all adults not just educators. Our children are modeling our behavior, and we are blaming the educators. Little Johnny didn’t improve his reading this year, so the teacher must not be teaching him. Well could it be that Little Johnny is to blame at some point? I mean Little Johnny sits there without a pencil or paper, and refuses to do the work. You call the parents, and their response is that they can’t do anything about it, or the parents never return your call. Yet, when the principal enters your classroom it is your fault that Little Johnny will not do anything, and when the test results from the FCAT come back it is the teacher’s fault that Little Johnny didn’t improve. In the state of Florida 8th graders are not required to take reading unless they fail or score low on the FCAT. If they score low or fail and are required to take reading then they end up in a class like mine. Here is the kicker though, they are required to take my class, they hate reading, I am held accountable not them for their improvement on test scores, but they do not have to pass the class or the FCAT. Where is the student’s accountability or the parents?

    I will tell you this, I love my students, and on the last day of school I will probably cry with my students. My students love me, and talk to me every chance that they get. I do not get frustrated about my job due to my students. I get frustrated with my job due to the politics and the ignorance of the adults. The fact is that for the amount of hours put into teaching, teachers are underpaid. The comment made about middle school and high school teachers not caring is a load of crap. Only a compassionate person can handle a bunch of hormonal teens that just about hate life at their present time. I can guarantee that most of the teachers that I know work their tails off trying to help our students improve, and it is not just about my job it’s only about the children.

    It was also mentioned in another post about lunches, we do get a half an hour lunch, but the average teacher uses the lunch time for making copies, checking in with other teachers, and checking in with parents. Teachers do not get bathroom breaks at all, and teachers do not get two 15 minute breaks like everyone else in every other job like required by federal law. We receive on conference or lesson planning period that is one hour long a day to take care of everything. That one hour includes our two 15 minute breaks as well. During that time we have to create lesson plans, take care of paperwork, make copies, call parents, have conferences with parents, grade papers, enter papers into the online system, conference with other teachers if necessary, meetings, and all other issues that tend to come up. I guarantee it is not enough time to get everything accomplished that is necessary.

    One last thing, the fact of the matter is that we choose jobs and career based on our strengths and enjoyments, but the first and foremost reason for choosing a job or career is financial restitution. If we did not need to work we would not work, and that can be said for almost all of us in life. If we could just volunteer or hang out with friends and family then most of us would. We choose teaching to make a difference, but like with any job we expect to be compensated, so that we like everyone else can pay our bills. I have a nice house, but only due to some luck and a lot of help from friends. That being said, I am a single mother with four children of my own, and I became a teacher due to that reason. I must say though that as a child I wanted to be a teacher, so my circumstances just pushed me in the right direction. I do not receive any support from my ex-husband, so we live completely on my salary as a teacher. I can not make the bills on just my salary due to childcare costs for my children, so I also run the before and after school program at our school. I am currently at my school from 7am-6pm, and then I go home to work an additional 2+ hours on grading, lesson planning and other items. I try my best to still be there for my own children. The biggest issue is that I end up with a lack of time, so I end up with a lack of sleep. I average 5 hours of sleep a night if I am lucky, and the week before Spring break I was averaging 2-3 hours of sleep a night all week. I work for the money I make, which can easily be seen. I am not saying that I think that we should be paid more per hour. I am saying that teachers should be compensated for the extra hours that they work. To everyone out there that is a teacher, I wish you the best of luck in your future, and to all of you wishing to be teachers good luck and beware that there is a lot of politics involved. To everyone that is hating on teachers, why is it that teachers are held responsible for everything that a child learns? I guess it is as equally absurd as holding a parent completely responsible. We can only lead them and guide them, but ultimately a child will make a choice. If a child makes a bad choice the child should be held responsible. We no longer as a society hold children accountable for anything that they do, so why do we get surprised when they act insane?

  • happy artist June 11th, 2010 at 9:22 pm 197

    Thanks so much for this!!! I get so much lip about wanting to be an art teacher..with a minor in Elementary or something else, just so i can insure a little more security…I am so tired of hearing how the “ellective classes are getting axed” …I am just so tired of told to “Go be a nurse”….

  • Little Johhny June 23rd, 2010 at 1:01 am 198

    Wow I’m amazed you have any teachers in the states. This is the country people want to emigrate to! I’m an admin manager for a school in Australia. Teachers are paid set rates. Before the age of 30 almost all are earning $80,000+ irrespective of qualifications!! A handful are on $100K + Keep in mind the exchange rate is almost on par. It doesn’t end there. All school holidays are taken by teachers. They don’t come to work period.(i.e. 3 months annual leave) You accrue 10 days a year sick leave fully paid. You accrue 13 weeks long service leave after 10 years and to top it all no one says boo to a teacher here because they are in short supply!!! On average teachers would head on home every day at about 4pm. The US truly is brainwashed. Donkeys and the carrot is Hollywood. Extreme capitalism and communism both suck. This is what happens when you have a system that legalises corrupt Govt. What do you think a lobby group is? We have handful of US teachers and other workers here. They visibly pale a the thought of going back to the States. All the pay rates etc. are freely available on Govt web sites in Aus.

  • UK not! June 26th, 2010 at 6:22 am 199

    Yes the salary in the UK is higher but it’s 4$ for a can of soda (pop) from a vending machine!

    A UK resident’s purchasing power stinks!

  • Rachel Roach June 28th, 2010 at 8:33 pm 200

    Chicago and Australia pay $80,000 for year 1!! Wow. WE are maybe at 43,000 in CA. Some areas of course are higher, some lower. Few areas have “special events teachers” – music, science, art,PE, etc during the day. My district had lost them 10 years ago. 3 of us 4th grade teachers took it upon ourselves to rotate art, music and PE during each week. The kids loved it, we knew it was a strong program so we continued it. The principal made us end the program. “4th graders should not be switching teachers like that.” See another part of what teachers are up against?
    Someone thinks we get 81 days off?/ paid?? crazy!! More like 25 and then it is spent planning and correcting and studying for those required credits or credential updates. These are all a part of the profession. We all know it. We would like the public to realize it!! We would like to be told thank you now and again. When the test scores went up a lot in our district, the supt. got an $8000 bonus, teachers got a cake! We would like kids to have better behavior and do their home work (parents take note). These elements of society are rapidly disappearing.
    Teaching is getting tougher.
    With NCLB, a lot of the fun is gone. Reading and math take 5 of the 6 hours kids are in class. Where is the history? science? health? singing?? art? doing plays? and programs? that really are a part of an education?
    Here in CA. we are not eligible for a spouse’s SOC SEC or our own. If we have collected the quarters with another job before entering teaching, those do you no good. I think about 13 states have this policy. The other states are allowed to collect soc. sec. for previous work or a spouses share. Check it out in your area! work to get the GEP/WPO repealed.

  • Somnolence July 2nd, 2010 at 10:06 pm 201

    I have pondered over the last 24 years what my station in life would have been had I obtained my teaching certificate. In my case, I was able to tolerate the student teaching experience for a mere two months before I decided it was not for me. The disciplinary problems which surfaced among many of the high school students in class while attempting to present the lesson of the day simply became too much for me to bear. The main problems were incessant talking, sometimes in defiance after being told not to, standing up in chairs, etc. Of course most of the students were well behaved, but the bad apples were just too discouraging. This was in 1986, so I’m sure that the problems have multiplied since then. And to top it off I was told that I would have a much better chance of being hired as a social science (history, political science, etc.) teacher if I had an extra 19 semester hours of a coaching/athletics program. Sorry, that part just didn’t pique my interest. I knew the material, knew my lesson plans inside and out off the top of my head without using notes, thought I presented it well, and the supervising teacher gave me a good critique. It simply was the outlook of being a “nursemaid” and being involved in extracurricular activities that became too much to bear. So in my opinion, more power to those who can survive the profession. It hurts me a little inside sometimes because I believe I could have been a good teacher. I did receive my bachelors, but without the teaching certificate. I’m 56 now, fairly financially secure, and semi-retired after an adult life of physical labor. Does anyone want to comment on the subject of maintaining class discipline and how to avoid discouragement? I did continue to substitute teach for a few years after that initial experience. That was at least 22 years ago, and on my final day I sent at least three kids to the principal’s office within an hour.

  • Lucifer July 6th, 2010 at 11:29 am 202

    There’s an old sayin..”those who can’t do, teach” good joke. However, there should be a revision to it. “Those who can’t teach, do anything else.” I was a doctor for the us military. I came out of the service and decided to go where i was needed. I became a NYC high school teacher. I’ve had highs and lows with my kids. I love the job. I hate the bureacracy and nonsense that go with it. People always think teachers are the lowest part of society. To those who bad mouth our profession, try it once. Teach in East New York, or Bed Stuy. Teach in a place where you hear gunshots outside while you try to teach. Many of us get combat pay. Try teaching in an inner city school for one day. You won’t make it past first period. Reading the comments posted by people who don’t know sickens me.

    Teaching..it’s not just a job…it’s an adventure.

    By the way. Remember one thing, if it wasn’t for a teacher, you couldn’t bad mouth them. Try saying thank you to one.

  • Teresa July 7th, 2010 at 10:02 pm 203


    I’m sorry, but are you saying you would like to receive a taxpayer funded pension AND Social Security? And you wonder why the public is turning against teachers. GREED.

  • Ms. San Diegan Teacher July 10th, 2010 at 2:53 pm 204

    Wow… I am amazed by the number of posts (I’m #200). First some salary info: I’ve taught high school English for 8 years. I have a Master’s in Literature. My salary is $59,000 BEFORE TAXES. I can’t afford to buy a house and I’m approaching 40. Now some advice: if you are going into this profession for the glory of “giving back”… make sure you understand that your efforts will largely go unnoticed… no big pats on the back here in this line of work. I got into teaching because I love my content area… I get to read literature and get paid for it.

    Good luck hopeful teachers… try not to get discouraged by this somewhat ugly, and often discouraging string of posts.

  • cassie July 22nd, 2010 at 9:42 pm 205

    i am in school now for elementary education and im not sure if i still want to be at teacher after viewing this. maybe by 2012 when i finish things will be better

  • Truthful July 23rd, 2010 at 10:40 pm 206

    Dear Rachel,

    I paid into both and was given no choice as to whether I would like to…..my family will receive no benefits while a stay at home mom will…I paid into and earned all my credits for both.

  • Jody July 27th, 2010 at 5:57 pm 207

    I’m a teacher in upstate New York. I teach high school English and am going into my 28th year at it, making just shy of $90,000. It sounds like a lot until you look at our taxes and cost of living. I’m not complaining. I am okay with my salary and consider the pension the trade-off. I still love the job, though it’s wearing me down. You need a lot of stamina to teach kids all day, and do hours of paperwork every night, and for ten months my head seems to be absolutely packed with school stuff 24/7 :-). My kids do very well on the state exams and I do my best to hold them to the standards they need to meet to be successful, but in the end, by 11th and 12th grade they have to want it themselves.

    My advice to new teachers: don’t be so sure that the problems kids face as students can be turned around by “new” techniques. I have seen new stuff come and go as the states desperately try to figure out how to get kids to do better, and nothing really works better than anything else. In the end, you need to make them responsible, make them think, and make them feel that it is *necessary* to learn what you’re teaching. There should be lots of praise for honest effort and consequences for behaviors that aren’t productive. Good teachers keep good records, contact parents regularly, and are as consistent as they possibly can be. A sense of humor is an absolute must, and you need to know your subject. I see so many college students with some vague idea that they “love poetry” who think that means they will be good English teachers….

    What I see as a major problem (in my school at least) is a lack of discipline, really. We have lost our ability to enforce proper behavior, to enforce attendance, and we have a generation of parents who seem to find it just too difficult to control their kids at home. As long as kids think they have an option as to whether they show up, do the work, show respect to their teachers and peers, then everything else seems to get sucked under the bus with that. I didn’t want to be in school when I was a kid, but I went because my parents would kill me if I didn’t. Because I was forced to go, I actually learned stuff. What a concept. If I got bad grades and tried to blame the teacher, my parents weren’t having any of it. They said, rightly, that in the end all I had to do was read, and I could learn anything I needed to, and the teacher was just a facilitator for when I got stuck. Obviously, that’s not true for every kid, but it’s true for the majority of my students. They don’t seem able to do anything for themselves now, and they are enabled by parents who are all too willing to blame everything on someone else, and by administrators who need to keep their graduation rates up for NCLB, and yes, by teachers who are being judged by their failure rates and test scores and are so overwhelmed that things just get by them.

    We have created a perfect storm for the kid who wants to slide through without learning much, by putting so much pressure on schools to have “good numbers” that we graduate barely literate children who haven’t done much of anything. The state exams re-invent themselves and their scoring systems regularly to allow for students to do less and less to pass an exam, so the state “numbers” look good so they can justify a flawed system of measurement and project some false impression of improvement where none exists. Once you combine that with the parents who can’t accept some responsibility for their kids’ learning readiness and behavior, you’ve got a system that is about to collapse in on itself.
    We keep trying to fix the wrong things, and it seems clear that it’s not working.
    *** Read Diane Ravitch, I beg everyone.***

    I keep doing my absolute best in the confines of my own classroom, but I really fear for the teacher just coming into the profession. I don’t see things getting better. I still love the kids and am trying to teach them in spite of the education and social system that conspire against the process.

  • Liv August 9th, 2010 at 1:36 pm 208

    Wow. This has been enlightening. I wanted to be a teacher. My parents talked me out of it because the “money isn’t there”. I live in a state where 20 years ago when I was in college, the women (almost all were women) in the education program were there to get their “Mrs. degree”. Ultimately, I didn’t get my teaching degree/license. I went into business.

    Fast forward a career. My husband recently left self employment and went back to school and got his teaching license. He was lucky enough (in Ohio) to get a job. He is making $38,000 right out of the program – far less than my income, but looking at his salary schedule I realized that I would be making far more than I am now if I had become a teacher. HOWEVER!!!

    My husband works harder than I do, longer than I do, and with no downtime in the day. He doesn’t have time (two minutes) to text, call, or email me. He is responsible for the education of 424 students. ALWAYS stays late, goes in early, and brings home work to do. I see him less now than when he was self employed! He teaches in an elementary school in a middle class suburb in a district noted as “excellent” by the state of Ohio. He has broken up fights, paid for kids lunches, and brought in our kids’ old jackets for winter, and boots so some could play at recess (can’t go out without boots in the winter). He has angry parents emailing him because their kids got “B’s” instead of “A’s”. An he has parents who never return phone calls when he reaches out to them regarding a concern. He has a few single mothers sho have called him and asked him to be a “mentor” to their fatherless (uninvolved) children.

    When he was self employed, people would always make a comment about how much $ he made in 6 months (seasonal business) but we would always say he works like a dog because he only has 6 months to earn what you have 12 months to earn. I feel that way about teaching. They have 9 months to do a job (teach kids a whole curriculum and be accountable when the kids don’t learn) that the rest of the world has 12 months to do it in. Needless to say, many times, he doesn’t get support from home…probably many of the people who believe teachers make too much and it’s not the parents’ job to teach their own children…

    Anyway, I ramble. The point is I believe teachers should be paid well. Are there perks? Yes. Just about every job has it’s perks. But like every job, there are cons as well. I am grateful he has a job. Especially after 2 years of full time schooling, with no income (which was on top of his original 4 year degree). I am not looking forward to him beginning work on his masters (a requirement in Ohio) because then I will never see him and it will only raise his income slightly, but that’s a choice we made…I wish teachers had more respect.

    Going back to my opening comments, and reading all of these posts, it seems clear to me that not much has changed in that arena in 20 years.

  • Gary August 14th, 2010 at 11:03 am 209

    I am a Missouri teacher, our base salary is $26,000. In my district which is a 4A district, the health benefits are paid by the district ( is it a HSA with no pres coverage.) If you want to buy up to get the coverage it is an extra $426 per month, if you go the family play it is $1,500 per month and you have to meet a $5000 ded before the insurance will pay the 80%. Individual teachers is $1000 ded before the insurance will pay.
    I have a Masterd Degree in my subject area and have been teaching 24 years and I am making $47,000 a year. They take out 13.5 % of your chekc for retirement ( public school retirement- which draws 2% interest) plus local and state taxes and medicare. My gross for the month is 3,000 and I bring home 1,900 a month. They take out 1,100. The unions do not decide salaries – teacher are not allowed to strike in Missouri ( it is against state law – a fellony), the unions do not do the health care either – that is up to the local district.
    This is the way it works in MO. Teachers are underpaid in MO.
    People also do not consider all the papers we take home at night to grade – we don’t get paid for that time. We do get one prep hour a day – but usually we use that time to put in grades in our gradebook ( computer grade book), we do lunch and morning and bus duty also that we don’t get paid for.

  • Gary August 14th, 2010 at 11:07 am 210

    Teachers in Missour do not draw social security either. We can draw the medicare because we do pay into the medicare portion. Our district pays $321 a month on the HSA – anything else – it comes out of your paycheck. Like the family play being $1,500 – that comes out of your paycheck – not paid by the district. WE also do not have dental or eye care on our insurance.

  • Mrs.Smith0110 August 15th, 2010 at 10:59 pm 211

    ever since I was in middle school all I have ever wanted to do was teach….when I finally graduated from HS I started to doubt going into teaching, and with all the freezes in Georgia, it really makes me want to change my mayjor. I have thought about and changed my major plenty of times but I keep wanting to go back to teaching….it’s just the thought of graduating and not being able to find a job freaks me out….are there any recently graduates in Georgia that have found a job with out too much trouble? I couldn’t mind traveling if I had to…nor do I really care about the pay. But I just have my doubts that I’ll work my ass off to find a job and fear I wasted 4 years of my life in school and now hate my job…but it’s just my biggest fear….I know my post is very scattered and my spelling is WAY off (hey never said I was going to become an English teacher lol!) but it’s late and I’m having one of those midnight pannick attacks and can’t seem to brush it off!

    ALSO!!!! In Georgia, (I have actually only taken one education class so I don’t know much) do you HAVE to have your masters to teach? If you DONT should I wait to get my masters until I get a job and then take night classes and summer classes for my masters, or should I just go ahead and go all the way through to my masters??

    Thank you all for your help!

  • C August 24th, 2010 at 12:40 pm 212

    A few things to get set up:

    1. Teachers are paid based on years experience and education. At least where I’ve taught (Michigan and Wisconsin) you get paid exactly the same amount for grade school level as you do for middle or high school and subject matter has zero impact on how much you make. (I’m sure deals have been made, but all under the table, union rules make it so.)

    2. If you are a newbie teacher, don’t move to a state just because their “average” pay is higher than others. I’ve seen HUGE differences in salaries between neighboring districts so simply moving to a state isn’t going to guarantee you money.

    3. Do you like money and respect? Then don’t go into teaching! Your fellow teachers and a few parents will be behind you, but most of the rest of the public will treat you like a servant and mention (often) that they “pay your salary”.

    4. If you still aren’t scared ( or scarred ) by reading this then welcome to the club. You’ll be rewarded in ways that you can’t imagine, hurt in more, but be able to look anyone in the eye and tell them you are a teacher.

  • Erin August 29th, 2010 at 10:11 pm 213

    Hello all,
    After reading all the passionate responses people had to this topic, I felt compelled to add my two cents. I teach in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota. We are not one of the highest paid states by any means. I have a MA and have been teaching five years. I make roughly $52,000 and have fantastic benefits. Our cost of living is not as high as the highest paid states and that should be taken into consideration.

    Aside from all of this is that it is common knowledge that teaching will not make you wealthy, at least not k-12 education. I have a comfortable enough life and am passionate about teaching. I love going to work and talking about history every day. I teach grades 7 and 8 and feel totally blessed by my students and their families. I feel the need to point out that I am working in a metro area and in the public school system. Given the state of our economy and the number of people unemployed and underemployed, I feel amazingly grateful to have a job that I love.

    The money I make is fairly decent for working in a career that I love so much. I hope all the bitterness over teacher pay that seems to be prevailing does not have a negative influence on the kids we teach…we would then really be failing those who need us.

    Thanks for listening!

    Erin in Minnesota

  • Debbie September 19th, 2010 at 12:09 pm 214

    I left my career in the marketing world to become an elementary school teacher. I knew exactly what I was getting into when I decided to go back to college and get my teaching degree. I work in the Dallas/Ft Worth of TX. My starting salary was $44,000/yr as a first year teacher last school year. This salary is half of what I use to make when I worked in corporate America. Luckily for me, I have a supportive husband and understood why I wanted to switch careers. I did NOT get into teaching for the pay or benefits. For me teaching isn’t a job, it’s my passion.

    I work 7a-4p, M-F, 9 hrs a day at my elementary school (I don’t take a lunch break, I eat at my desk so I can finish paperwork). When I get home, I spend 3 hours doing more school work each evening after my own kids to go to bed.

    I teach to children who are living in low income households and who live in a high crime area of town– enough said. My job is hard. I have parents who could care less about what their children are learning. But I am inspired to reach out and make a difference… I chose to become a teacher and though I am new to the profession, I feel that I made the right move. I love my job. It would be nice if teachers were paid more, but hey, I’m happy. I love every one of my students, and when they get that “A-ha!” moment during a lesson, it’s absolutely priceless for me.

    If you are looking to become a teacher, follow your heart. But know what you are getting into and also know, how rewarding teaching can be. 🙂

  • bill September 21st, 2010 at 5:52 pm 215

    i am 10 years out of college and making comparable salaries to teachers but have 10 vacation days and put in 50-60 week hours. I don’t think much of it either way, but i can tell you how growing up in NJ about every other teacher would just sit there and openly complain about their salaries to their students and how they’re underappreciated. Extremely annoying and not really currying any favor for future taxpayers. There are some professions that do make considerably more but the majority of college educated professionals are in a similar — especially when prorated against the short vacation year.

    I just wish teachers would complain unless about how they are underpaid (except for those of you in the South who do seem underpaid – but i guess that’s what you get for being in public service in the south).

  • GA teacher September 28th, 2010 at 3:04 pm 216

    I teach in one of the best paid counties in Ga. 11 years of experience with my T-6 (Ed. Specialist degree- not sure what they call it in other states but it is after masters and before doctorate.)

    State+local supp. = 63,000 per year for 180 days.
    this is as of 2010

    Trying to find out how this compares to other states taking into consideration cost of living.


  • Isabel October 2nd, 2010 at 11:50 pm 217

    Does anyone knows what are the requirements for becoming a bilingual teacher in Washington state? I am currently a bilingual teacher in Texas (elementary)

  • Bak October 4th, 2010 at 8:02 pm 218

    source: teacherportal(dot)com
    This website does not seem to be up to date. I see posts here from 2007 which made me wonder how accurate the information was so I did some research of my own. This website (posted as my source) lists both the salaries AND comfort index.

    Number, State, Average Salary and CI (Comfort index)

    1. California – 59,825 CI: 44
    2. Connecticut – 59,304 CI: 22
    3. Illinois – 58,686 CI: 1
    4. New Jersey – 58,156 CI: 36
    5. New York – 57,354 CI: 38

    According to teacher salary and comfort index Illinois is the best state to teach but realistically speaking teachers everywhere are underpaid for the job that they do. It’s not simply about teaching the curriculum but about molding students to be the future citizens of this country. A documentary is coming out shortly called “Waiting for Superman” (used quotations since I can’t underline) about education in America. There was also an article recently published in the “Times” magazine recently. I have no idea why the white house is only now taking notice.

    Side Note: Just finished my English BA and hope to be an English teacher in the state of NY or CT.

  • asd October 13th, 2010 at 1:55 pm 219

    things also cost more in the uk.

  • ali October 19th, 2010 at 5:22 am 220

    i live in Iran. a 30 year teachers salary here is just 8000 in a year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Julie October 20th, 2010 at 2:29 pm 221

    Debbie, I couldn’t have said it any better 🙂 There is no reason in comparing state by state salaries. We just need to be aware of what we need for ourselves and our families. Like you, I have a supportive husband who makes very good money at his job with good benefits. I have my masters in teaching and have 2 years experience. In Tennessee, I started out making 45,000 and this year got a raise to 47,500. While this is not a lot of money, take into consideration that our mortgage here is $1,200. Living expenses are completely different from CA,NY and many other cities. For us, it works great. I love my job and love teaching.

    To all future teachers, please do not get discouraged by some of these comments. Do what you love and follow your heart.

  • cathryn salinovich October 23rd, 2010 at 7:16 am 222

    In Perth Australia a four year trained teacher with Bachelor Degree and ten year’s experience is $79000 aus = $76000US$

  • Holly October 30th, 2010 at 9:10 pm 223

    I must refer to Diane’s comments because they infuriate me. I am a second year elementary school music teacher in Ga and Diane, Im sorry, but you obviously do not have a clue and no respect. Everyone is suffering in this current recession and ranting about a respectful profession not deserving due credit is just very selfish.

    In my school district, I am currently facing 5 furlough days (that means 5 days unpaid out of my yearly salary). On top of that, because of budget cuts, I am not provided with resources for my classroom that I would normally be provided. Just to ensure that my students have the resources they need for an enriched learning experience I have spent at least $300 both this year and last ($600 total) of MY OWN MONEY on materials. This is not including the facial tissue which I have to provide myself and ink cartridges for my printer, which cost $80 each. I try my best to conserve how much ink I use for this year.

    Teachers are also required earn professional learning units in Ga to renew their teaching license every 5 years. The courses for these units also cost money. I spent $475 this past summer on a professional learning course to keep up with current trends in elementary music.

    Also, you said that teachers don’t work 8 hour days like most people. I don’t know where you are getting that from. Most teachers,good ones who are dedicated, work SEVERAL HOURS UNPAID planning and grading and assessing and coming up plans for remediation for students who need it to ensure their success. On a typical day, I am at school for at least 10 hours or I take my work home with me. So, for your information, our work continues long after the children have left for the day and we are not paid for it.


    Don’t get me wrong. I love my job. It is a joy and I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t find it rewarding. I just think you should get your facts straight before you spout without having a clue!!!

  • Jill November 9th, 2010 at 1:55 pm 224

    Yes Holly. You are absolutely correct. After searching for a public school teaching job for over 12 years here in NY, I have finally given up. I too am a music teacher. I worked for 12 years in a low paying private school and had to do much of the same you are doing now. With the poor economy, I was cut $15,000 and was forced to leave since we could not live on this. I worked 10-12 hours a day between set up, prep, etc. I even worked through my lunch time. It’s sad that many do not appreciate teachers and feel that they are overpaid. Ha, what a joke. I am now out of the profession and happier. I enjoyed every minute of the years I worked! Good luck to you.

  • Megan November 15th, 2010 at 2:30 pm 225

    Wow, it is outrageous how little teachers earn and how little they are respected! I cannot believe teachers, who have one of the most important roles in our society and go through mutliple testing,schooling and challenges to be treated and viewed as they do. I am proud to become a teacher in the next year, but our society hardley aknowledges the hardworking teachers! People need to realize teachers dedicate their lives to the service of educating our children who grow up to lead our country. I would say this is more important thn most jobs who earn double the amount that teachers earn. How can the government expect high acheivement levels when there is little funding? If they want results, I think they know where to start!

  • Unsan November 17th, 2010 at 11:33 am 226

    The low pay for teachers is not and has not been a secret. If you want more pay than I suggest you go into a different career.

  • NCteacher November 17th, 2010 at 1:34 pm 227

    I am a NC teacher with a Masters in my second year and make less than 34,000 a year. Our local supplements are only 2% of our salary.

  • Kylar November 17th, 2010 at 7:48 pm 228

    In response to the previous comment: The reason they don’t get very much money is because they get payed with our tax dollars. Meaning all those tax cuts are just hurting the teachers

  • Brad December 6th, 2010 at 9:19 am 229

    My wife is a school teacher and is in her 6th year of teaching with her Masters plus 30 and has National Boards Certification in West Virginia. Her pay is only about 44,000 or 45,000 per year. Now that she has her National Boards she can teach in other states. Just curious if someone can point us in a good direction.

  • Caleb December 8th, 2010 at 5:53 pm 230

    You should all come to CT the starting salary in Bristol is 50,000

  • brad December 12th, 2010 at 1:22 pm 231

    That is sad I’m a asst. Mngr at walmart an I make 43k a year not including 5% bonus an I’m 21.teachers tought m/e what I know now they should be treated better

  • teaching-tree December 28th, 2010 at 10:14 pm 232

    Hope you all feel blessed to have higher entry level salaries than teachers in Puerto Rico 20k

  • Tabatha~Texas January 2nd, 2011 at 10:23 pm 233

    Oh, my! I am thoroughly frightened now. I am working towards a secondary education major specializing in mathematics. Unlike many of the posts I have read, I am not a single parent. One night my husband and I were looking over our bills, and we became concerned that the bad economy may eventually hinder us from paying the bills. So, I have gone back to school to bring in a supplemental income and still have time to enjoy my children. However, reading the previous posts I am really afraid that I have made the wrong decision. I taught math (unofficially) to G.E.D. students and found that I really loved teaching. But will I actually be able to bring a peace of mind to our budget? If I only make … let’s say 35,000 a year, does that mean I will only bring home 21,000 after taxes, maybe even less? I don’t know if I can justify making payments on an education that I can never pay off! In my choice of career have I really defeated the entire purpose of my going back to school?

  • Pamela January 4th, 2011 at 10:23 am 234

    It seems these days a Bachelor’s of Science degree in a scientific field or Mathematics is just a useless piece of paper, both in the teaching world and in business and industry. Not only will almost no state give their first level teacher license with “just” that but also the industry won’t hire anyone with just a Bachelor’s degree in their idea of entry-level jobs. What a waste of time, money, indebtedness to student loans, and a waste of my life. Private schools used to be the only recourse for someone with “just” a Bachelor’s in a science field but now they’re so overwhelmed with applicants from out of work state certified public school teachers who are desperate for anything they can get to keep them out of the homeless shelters and off the streets that even that isn’t an option. Not even jobs teaching English to foreigners want someone with a Biology or Math major these days. What a waste of my life.

  • REALITY CHECK January 5th, 2011 at 2:14 pm 235

    You all should just stop and thank God you chose education rather than healthcare. I have to smell butts and poop all day, am overworked and under paid. I make 36K yearly with 4 years college and 10 years exerience. To get off even a week in the summer, you have to sleep with the right people and stab your coworkers in the back. our insurance is a joke and sickness, disease, death, and dying are such party killers. I’m happy for all of you. Really.

  • debbie January 8th, 2011 at 2:55 pm 236

    After working support staff in my local school for many years, Iwent back to school to get my teaching degree/license. It is a shame that for the most part it is the well educated who feel we are paid too much. Perhaps, if some of the “pork barrel” spending were cut, then maybe, just maybe, teachers and support staff would be able to recieve the benefits they most soundly deserve.

  • Chance Felkins January 13th, 2011 at 1:02 pm 237

    now only if they would stop complaining and start teaching and thinking that the school dosent revolve around them it about the kids and there education

  • looking for some comparison January 16th, 2011 at 4:45 pm 238

    Alright well I’m looking for (and providing) a comparison for a starting salary in the Midwest (200k pop. town).

    Don’t forget that when comparing salaries location and population are HUGE factors.

    I’m in an entry level technology position. I make 30k/year (salary) along with overtime. Health care (dental and vision included with an additional monthly payment), life insurance and a matching 401k are also provided. “Matching” may not be the best term for the convoluted 401k scheme we’ve got but they do help.

    From reading through a few of the posts here (many disturbingly poorly written for teachers) I’m thinking this is a pretty decent starting salary.

    Also I find it interesting that private school teachers seem to make less the public school teachers??? I’m not commenting on whether that’s “fair” or not but the logic seems to follow that they’d be making more.

  • igiveadamn January 17th, 2011 at 1:39 pm 239

    OK, so I have read about the first 100 of these posts. I am a firm believer that teachers do not make as much money as they should. I have had it said that teachers have become nothing more than “glorified babysitters”. Even at a babysitting rate, with the number of kids we deal with, we are still underpaid!

    However, I am appalled at the intelligence(or lack thereof) of some of the educators who have written posts. It is incredible how poorly some of you write, and it’s a reflection of why our students read and write at such a low level.

    I teach in a very large, inner-city school in eastern PA, so I know the uphill battles we face. The biggest problem is dealing with students who don’t care about their actual report card grades. Then, on top of that, we are expected to get our kids to care about PSSA scores which mean even less to them. However, these are the scores that the school/administrators/community/state look at with the most scrutiny.

    The bottom line is this: Teachers are NOT paid what they deserve, however, there are definitely those teachers out there in classrooms who should NOT be teachers. It is those who need to be removed from the classroom! Weed out the ones who don’t get the job done, and pay the teachers who deserve it!

  • Nick Woods January 23rd, 2011 at 10:46 am 240

    I think teachers should make a whole lot more then what they do. These are our kids there teaching and these kids will be running the world one day. You get what you pay for if they don’t start paying them we better watch out.

  • Kelsey January 28th, 2011 at 1:24 am 241

    Why are there so many grammatical errors in these posts by teachers? A highly intelligent person would never become a teacher, unless he or she was truly passionate about teaching. A highly intelligent person, without a passion for teaching, will rarely choose a profession for which they will be unfairly compensated.

    I chose to be a teacher after growing up in NY, where teachers are well-paid. I like teaching, but I am not overly-passionate about it. I now teach in Idaho where the conditions and compensation are atrocious. If I had known my life would bring me to Idaho, I would have chosen a different career.

  • bg January 29th, 2011 at 5:15 pm 242

    Dear Fellow teachers,
    I live in the Bay Area. I am BLESSED to be in one of the highest paid states and more so district in the state. The benifits are not stellar, I pay my own medical b/c it’s cheaper then the group rate at work.
    It is important to be positive and passionate about teaching b/c the children can see it and feel it. They may or may not appreciate it, especially older students but we have to continue to be the best we can be.
    I have second grade and sometimes I feel it’s hard to compete for their attention when they have the amazing tech world of video games and Wii at home
    but, I’m in my 7th year of teaching, and I still love it!
    I also know the realities of financial stability. I worked part time for a long time in retail, commercial tutoring, private tutoring, focus groups, teaching dance, mystery shopping, and then I found a better, more positive, fun, and less time consuming way to make great money on the side WHILE loving teaching. Along with taking care of family, community service, fitness, and social life. I thought I was too busy, but it was so simple.
    Interested? Go to http://www.prepaidlegal.com/hub/grice3, learn more and email me!

    Keep pushing on, don’t be afraid to be silly, try a different accent, call & response works GREAT! Look up books by Stephanie harvey and Debbie Miler, it will change the way you think about learning!

    Happy trails,

  • Fireball2000 January 31st, 2011 at 12:26 am 243

    I have a lot to say below but was curious if someone could answer a couple questions. I would have put it at the end if not for fear that it may not be read, lol. I currently have a job as a teacher in Florida. However, conditions are at the extreme (if you knew who I was you would know it really was the extreme and not just a lazy teacher) and I need to find another job so I have time to spend with my family. I already have a great job lined up but am I under contract? If I put a two weeks or month notice in now what would happen? Wouldn’t I still get some of the money that I would normally get for the summer months?
    I also read about the first 100 posts…ok…igiveadman, I would first like to address a comment you stated concerning conventions. Many teachers may have used conventions incorrectly but their could be many reasons. For instance, they could be a math whiz and only hold a math certificate. Secondly, he or she could hold a K-2 certificate due to lack of knowledge in secondary Language Arts and its mechanics. Third, we are typing on an article/forum and this is similar to texting and is somewhat informal. I did a small research paper about ten years ago on the Internet and how it has affected and changed our language. I’m am not excusing this but am rather understanding it.
    The issues with education right now are very volatile. We do not know what is going to happen but it definitely looks grim. I majored in education at a time when the economy here in the U.S. was soaring. However, that changed a few months before I graduated. I was top of my class and had professors telling me I would have no problem finding a job; it took me nearly 6 months. Here is a million dollar questions for all of you…What is the point of education? A colleague of mine asks this question quite often in meetings but I don’t believe anyone actually knows what is being asked. Are we there to teach the kids? Are we there to retrain the students on positive behavior because they have no parents? Are we there to be parents? Are we there to meet the unrealistic demands of administrators that cause problems for us and then make it appear to be our fault when really we could have done better without them?
    I majored in education because it was an excellent career choice that involved summers and holidays off. I didn’t really have a favorite career…I like almost anything and get along with everyone…until this year. I planned on furthering my education after 5 or 6 years and then resume working on my doctorate. Unfortunately, the economy plummeted and took education down with it. Now, I am having to pull the work load for two teachers. One of the things people don’t realize is this has not always been an issue until recently. If you say otherwise you are ignorant because I have had very reputable people that have been in the system for nearly thirty years give me concrete examples and unequivocal testimonies (Remember, ignorance is not stupidity but lack of intelligence). There are many arguments I could bring up against merit pay but that would be useless due to the counterarguments. However, I will say that bringing merit pay will shift teaching to the private sector. This is another reason I began teaching; the public sector. If I wanted a real competitive job, to make lots of money, cutthroat business world, high chance of losing my job…then I would have gotten a degree in business….well I have to go…lots to say and not enough time.

  • tracy January 31st, 2011 at 8:18 pm 244

    you can’t compare your salaries to a babysitter…they don’t get benefits or a pension. I will tell my kids not to become doctors or lawyers. work for the government and get a job where the taxpayers pay you to retire!

  • Marcy February 1st, 2011 at 1:31 am 245

    I taught in NJ for 3 years. I had enough. I don’t care how much they pay, it is not worth it. The amount of work you have to do is insane. At the end you don’t add up to more than $15 an hour, if you count the endless hours spent planning. Someone mentioned she spends her conference time doing this. It is certainly not enough for the demands. Lack of planning is what causes most of the classroom management problems. It is a no win situation for the teacher. Those thinking about teaching, should really weight in all the options before making that commitment.

  • Thespis In Texas February 4th, 2011 at 11:24 pm 246

    Just some facts to squelch the FUD.
    I’m a 17 year veteran teacher in Texas.
    My usual day is 12 to 14 hours AT SCHOOL, including rehearsals.
    My salary is about $61,000 with a stipend for being the Theatre director.
    My salary is a daily rate for 183 days. I am ONLY paid for 183 days.
    I pay the entire premium for my insurance; my district pays nothing.
    I pay into my pension plan instead of Social Security so I don’t have a problem with the double dipping rule.
    The taxpayers of the state DO NOT pay my pension.
    For those taxpayers who say they pay my salary, I have a question. I pay school taxes in my district too; do I pay my own salary?
    I NEVER complain, but I ALWAYS defend what I do to those who attack me for doing nothing.
    I love my job and my life.
    I don’t ever want do anything else.

  • Missmeliss February 10th, 2011 at 8:34 am 247

    What do you guys think?

    I am graduating this May and I was considering Health Teacher Education or Public Health. I know teachers do not get paid enough as they should be, but what do you think pays more? Also, for those who are teachers, are they cutting health program? Is it not a good choice to go in health teacher field?

  • Colbey February 10th, 2011 at 10:57 pm 248

    Just to put things into perspective…
    My father is a firefighter near Portland, Oregon and his salary is around $150,000 WITH overtime. Without overtime would just be a little less. Yeah, teachers are under-paid.

  • Happy to be in Canada February 14th, 2011 at 3:35 am 249

    I live in Alberta, Canada.
    1st year teacher with a bachelors degree starts at 58k per year including dental, medical and pension.
    This increases to a 10 year teacher, where the maximum salary is at 94k per year. Maybe should think about moving up north. The living standards are excellent, health care is good, safe neighborhoods and school environment. Hey, the Canadian dollar is at par with the US now. It makes sense, right eh

  • Doug February 15th, 2011 at 7:01 pm 250

    Wow- I can’t believe there are people on here bold enough to insinuate that teachers complani too much and are treated fairly. I am not one but I know based on the importance they play in developing the minds that will help the success of our country, they are well underpaid and underappreciated.
    I am a CPA, hate my job, want to get into teaching, have a MBA, and tried to get a job through NC lateral entry program. Then I saw salaries in the 30k range and my jaw dropped. That’s 60% < then what I make and while I know it would make me happier, I cant afford it. Unless I am misinformed.
    It is naive for people to say they get paid for 9 months of work and leave at 3 every day etc. They are in before the start of school, stay after many days, are involved in after school activities, have work they take home, pay out of pocket for supplies, and other admin responsibilities. I am not a teacher or someone who really follows current events, but even I know that these statements are not exaggerations and are accepted as the norm for that industry.

  • Peter February 16th, 2011 at 7:56 pm 251

    Why would you delete my previous post about Canadian salaries?

  • lisa February 17th, 2011 at 11:06 am 252

    This article is incorrect the average teacher salary in Ga for teachers with a Bachelor’s degree is 45,000. Your salary increases as you earn more education. For example, if you have a Master’s degree your starting salary is at least 50,000. Teachers are paid for 12 months, which means you are paid for your vacation time such as one week for Thanksgiving, two weeks Christmas, 1 week winter break, Spring Break,2 months summer vacation and all major holidays. This is a great benefit because you can pick up extra work during long vacations which results in you getting paid by two companies.

  • Tricia Lea February 19th, 2011 at 9:11 am 253

    I teach special education in Washington State. I have a Master’s Degree, a National Board Certificate, and 30 years of experience. I make $75000 a year, but our salary schedule only pays up to 16 years of experience (down) and Master’s plus 90 credits (across). I was also receiving a $10000 National Board bonus check because I teach in a “challenging” school that has over 70% free lunch. So, $85000 is not too bad. I love what I do, and earn every dime that I keep. I paid almost $20000 in taxes, plus another $5000 to my benefits. Our governor now wants to delete the bonuses. I will probably retire and work at McDonalds with many on my former students. Well, if I would have started there 30 years ago, I would probably own one by now!! No, I truly love teaching and have been paid millions in rewards. You can put a priced on “Miss, you are the best teacher I’ve every had!”

  • RCM February 21st, 2011 at 1:46 pm 254

    Just look at the performance meaning scale on math, reading and science skills. The USA is not even in the top 10. When our educators start making our children more competitive with the rest of the world, then start paying them what they are worth. Finland is rated number one in science and reading and number two in math with the average teacher wages of 43,000 dollars a year. Question I ask, is why are they number one.

  • Jason February 22nd, 2011 at 2:21 pm 255

    Here is the issue cut and dry. Some teachers do only make 44,000 a year but they are early in their career and will make much more in the future and they live in some of the cheaper areas of the country plus that’s not even looking at the total compensation package. Most get free top of the line health insurance and free pension (some have to put in a very small amount which they claim is not small but it is) which is unheard of in the private sector. Each state has there own contract and I’m sure they are not all as good as in New York and California.

    I met a teacher recently who was making 112,000 a year, works 170 days a year and will get 90% of that pay every year for the rest of his life after he retires and was complaining about how he is ripped off and deserves much much more. I told him he was crazy.

    They make a lot more in Canada and the UK but are taxed much more so I think it’s about even or maybe even less than US teachers.

    Really the salaries are not high but we cannot afford to continue to give teachers such high benefit packages (and here them complain about them) without going broke, oh wait they have already made us broke…

  • Robert February 23rd, 2011 at 7:01 pm 256

    The cost of living in the UK is also much higher so I would expect they get paid more.

  • Canadian Teacher February 23rd, 2011 at 10:59 pm 257

    I feel so very fotunate to be living in place where teachers as a group are valued and well compensated. I have been teaching 25 years and I make $92000 per year. With the Canadian dollar at par with the American, you can really understand how grateful I am. American policy makers and the conservative media pundits have railed against the US becoming like Canada . public health care, higher taxes, higher product prices et al. However, I enjoy a lifestyle that no teacher in the states can aspire to and I am proud to say that I work in an excellent education system (scoring the top results in language, science and math in the English speaking world). As of last year 15 percent more Canadian kids graduated from college and/or university than American kids. Teachers are well paid allowing our systems to attract the brightest and best. Over 95% of high school students are in publicly funded schools in Canada compared to less than 83% in the states. The rich in the states do not value public education because they never had a use for it. Canadians do. Most conservative pundits can grouse about the cost of public education, but they simply do not understand its value. Good luck, friends!

  • James March 10th, 2011 at 11:12 pm 258

    Canadian Teacher: Shhh…don’t dare tell your story to America again. The people may catch on and us uber-rich folks who are in charge may have to pay a little more in taxes. I need all the money I can get to finish paying off the remodeling job I just did on my 3rd house, not to mention the alimony I’m paying to wife #1 and #3. I don’t have to pay alimony to wife #2 anymore because fortunately she died. Yea! She fell asleep with a cigarette in her hand and burned her house down with her in it, and that god awful cat of hers. She never was the sharpest knife in the drawer. My wife, that is, not the cat. The cat was smarter. My ex would have been saved except the fire station in the town closest to her house was shut down so that the city could afford the tax breaks for Pipedream Products, a maker of adult toys. Get this, now we’re paying them. But it’s worth it because it created jobs. Two, in fact. One takes the orders and the other ships them out. Of course the products are made in China.

    There’s one thing I just don’t get. The US of A obviously has the best healthcare system in the world. Why don’t countries like yours and those in Europe follow our lead? Just think, if you were a politician running for office you could sell yourself by promising to turn your country’s healthcare system into one like the United States has. They’d love you for it and your opponent wouldn’t stand a chance. What a long and successful political career you’d have. It works over here. Are we just so much smarter than everyone else? Is that it? You guys up there must be green with envy.

  • kianti March 13th, 2011 at 9:42 pm 259

    For a student in college trying to major in teaching, all this information was very interesed to me. I understand that the pay for teaching in some areas may be a little low but personally i think that there are alot of benefits in the teaching career that over powers the pay. For example helping students or children make a differenc i there lives. Thats priceless ! Of course im not saying that the money is not important but what i am saying is that the money is not everything. Im becoming a teacher not because of the pay but to help others that wants to be help. To help change a childs life. To teach these children life long advices that will help them along there life. I know i can do it because a teacher did it to me! =D

  • miteacher March 15th, 2011 at 3:09 pm 260

    Our district in MI has ave. salary @ 79,000. How come I am seeing salaries so much lower?

  • Rafael March 16th, 2011 at 7:56 am 261

    I do not mean to be rude but the average salary is not bad for only working 75% of the year. The average seems fair giving the very NON-technical degree and education requirements and for the lesser time having to work. My girlfriend’s mother is a teacher, own’s a house and lives a very comfortable (but modest) life by teaching summer school. I seriously don’t think teacher’s should be making more than engineers or scientists.

    Seriously, you guys aren’t teaching kids anything else that a bright high school graduate already knows and can probably teach himself. Frankly I don’t even think a bachelor’s degree should be needed to teach at a high school level. There should just be proficiency exams on the subject you wish to teach. Especially for middle and grade school.

    Did I mention that my girlfriend’s mother isn’t that bright, can’t do fractions and decimals (really, she has a hard time), doesn’t even seem like a mentally alert person, yet still manages to keep her job and OK salary because of unions?

    If teachers want 70K or 80K salaries, think about teaching at at least a college level. At least I won’t feel as bad as a teacher making almost as much as myself, as an engineer.

  • wake up america March 18th, 2011 at 9:58 pm 262

    Facts about an average teacher in my school district:

    Salary: 32,000-65,000 (depending on experience, advanced degrees, etc.)

    Days: 186 Hours: Required on site=186 plus 6 work nights plus other activities

    Days unlisted: Countless–keeping up with re-licensing requirements, creating lessons, developing additional materials, purchasing materials (their own money), organizing supplies, labeling materials, grading, communicating with families, going to the doctor (multiple bladder infections due to not being able to go to the bathroom from 8-12 or 12:25-3:45), developing technology materials, and so much more!

    Yes, they do have 25 minutes for lunch that includes going to the restroom, taking their students to/from the lunchroom, and calling families that just don’t understand why you couldn’t return their call during math time.

    Yes, they do have one 15 minute recess (oh wait, they’re on duty at this time, too).

    Yes, they do have to pay to join the PTA, purchase school supplies (students not supplying materials, purchase materials (bulletin boards, snacks, manipulatives, additional reading materials at a variety of reading levels).

    I could go on, but I’ve got to get back to a school project, while on my spring break. (another one of those times I’m working on work without being at work)

  • Louis March 18th, 2011 at 11:50 pm 263

    Wow. I don’t mean to be rude Rafael, but you’re a complete jerk. To say a Teacher shouldn’t make as much as you because we have Non-Technical degrees is completely ignorant. Teachers have an incredible influence over the lives of young children, and can help them realize their full potential. Do you realize how many parents don’t acknowledge their own children or don’t know how to be encouraging? Teachers are more than someone who shows up and asks the class to read a book or do a math problem. I do realize that there are some Teachers who may not be as good as others, but aren’t there engineers who are not as good as others? Yes. It happens.

  • Go Utah March 20th, 2011 at 3:53 pm 264

    Go Utah. 1st year 27,000 and classes of 32-40 students

  • Mike March 24th, 2011 at 11:30 pm 265

    Well I was talking to my history teacher and he says that the reason they get paid so little is because they can be replaced easily. I think they should get more money I think the only way I would teach is if I didn’t need money

  • JustOneTeacher March 31st, 2011 at 9:27 pm 266

    Rafael, I am sorry that you are not impressed your girlfriend’s mother who happens to be a teacher. Before you insult every teacher based on your experience with one, I would like to say a few things:

    A) You would be surprised at the qualifications of some of today’s teachers. There are several of us who have high-level degrees who decided to invest in the future of our country by investing in the youth of our country. My PhD is no less meaningful as a result of my decision to teach. I enjoy the opportunity to share my passion for bioengineering with my students. They also enjoy hearing about my passion for environmental sciences, occupational therapy, applied mathematics, and research and calculations. Why does this broad background make me worthy of a poor salary? I am teaching future leaders in the fields of science, math, and technology.

    B) If you run the numbers, 75% of the year at 60-75+ hrs/wk = 45-56+ hrs/week during 100% of a year. Plus, you are making the common mistake of believing that most teachers don’t work over summer. (Just because we are not on salary does not mean we are not working, preparing for the next year. I prefer to create most of my resources from scratch and design my almost my entire curriculum over summer. This averages to 20-30 hrs/wk, unpaid.)

    C) I have worked in many arenas. I have done bookkeeping/small business consulting, research in the fields of psychology and education, program design/development, grant writing, manual labor, and teaching (college, then high school, and now middle school (trying to find the level at which fundamentals are being lost/untaught)). Based on this experience, I suggest that until you teach children (esp K-8) you should not declare it as easy. It is the hardest job I have had to date. (The politics and budgets, alone, create challenges that I have encountered nowhere else.) It is also the most important job: to see a challenge and face it, rather than run in another direction.

    On a daily basis, I ask myself why I bother to keep teaching. I could make 2-3x my salary with better hours/benefits, more professional growth opportunities, fewer stress-related health problems (I have been lucky, so far; but several of my young peers have had strokes/heart attacks/etc), and more respect. I do not HAVE to teach. I could make a difference in other ways, as I already have. However, then what? If every teacher acted on those frustrations quit, only those who ARE in it for summer break would remain. And, an uneducated society is not good for a democratic country.

    In closing, please do not believe the rhetoric that engineers are at the top of the career “food chain”. I have great respect for engineers. My brother and father are engineers. I began college as an engineer (until I got bored with the lab work and switched fields, though recent advances and encouragement from a variety of honorable sources have tempted me to return).

    Regardless of my/your appreciation for the field of engineering, you/we must understand that each worker in each field has value. Please walk a mile in a teacher’s (or any other professional’s) shoes before passing judgment.

    PS – What is your position on the salaries of musicians, actors, and athletes? I am just curious.

  • maverick June 18th, 2011 at 1:22 am 267

    Not relation to any of the discussions before this. I asking a serious question to any teacher who has had any experience of working as a high school teacher in california. I am hoping someone can tell me how much money a high school history teacher on average needs to make in order to live somewhat comfortably in california.(hopefully somewhere in the bay area). I hope someone will reply soon! Thanks!

  • Adam-high school student June 21st, 2011 at 3:16 am 268

    I was wondering weather or not teachers in the nor cal specificaly butte county have a problem with the whole cost of living and the amount of money they make. Also i plan to get my teaching credentials and was wondering where some good places to get a teaching job would be

  • Ivo June 25th, 2011 at 3:54 am 269

    Dear colleagues and others,
    I am a teacher from Belgium (Europe). My apologies for my rather poor English, but I have a question regarding teachers’ salaries in the US. The aim off my question is to find out differences in different models of social security and illustrate them in class by a practical example. For the insiders: comparing the American thinkers Rawls and Nozick with our European model.
    I am a teacher with a masters degree and I teach children age 14-17, 20 hours a week (= full time), 30 weeks a year. With 15 years of experience I am paid $ 3500 per month (12 times a year) after taxes. A colleague with a bachelors degree gets aprox. $ 500 less. In Belgium teachers are not paid by the school, but directly by the ministry of education. Salaries vary only by bachelor or masters degree and years of experience, not by type of school or course. Everybody is paid at rates which can be consulted at the ministry’s website.
    Let’s assume that the cost of living in Belgium and in the US is roughly the same. (Fuel and electronics are cheaper in the US, food and French wine are cheaper in Belgium, the rest is aprox. the same. ) Enrolling in a university costs about $ 1000 a year + $ 1000 for books. Most parents can afford to pay their children’s studies so we don’t have student loans. National healthcare is obligatory for everybody and covers aprox. 90% of your medical expenses. If you want health- and dental care for free (as I do) you take extra private health insurance at $ 800 a year per family. My pension is of course paid by taxes and mounts up to 75% of my last salary.
    So, my question is: do teachers’ salaries in the US after taxes include health insurance and pension? If not, what does it cost? What would it cost to send your two children to university? Is it easily affordable on a medium salary? Do teachers in the US have other benefits which we don’t have?

  • marcell June 30th, 2011 at 1:30 pm 270

    in brazil is the worse salary of he world in the month ,$ 500

  • Janice July 27th, 2011 at 7:34 pm 271

    Some Teachers are Worth the Salary,…While Many
    others, simiply are Not….Have to weed them out
    Janice, Phila, Pa

  • Louise August 21st, 2011 at 9:02 pm 272

    I have the utmost respect for American teachers. Teaching for that small sallery, with little health care and benefits when you get ill is apalling. As a Canadian elementary school teacher who is going to make over $93 000.00 this year with just 11 years teaching experience. I think I am grateful to work in a country that respects teachers and the education of their students. I hope we become an example of and apporprieate payscale that you can follow.

  • bluebird October 25th, 2011 at 8:56 am 273

    louise, i don’t know where you get your info, but american teachers have great health care packages at least we do here in alabama.

  • Geneva October 25th, 2011 at 1:29 pm 274

    I don’t understand why teacher salaries are so low. We should really boost the salaries and weed out the bad teachers. This will boost our education system.

  • Rose October 31st, 2011 at 4:21 pm 275

    Bluebird, I don’t know where you get your information from but I teach college and I make less than $40,000 and I do a great job by going the extra mile.

  • Lady November 12th, 2011 at 2:02 pm 276

    Teacher pay & benefits vary state to state & from district to district within each state. States have a set minimum, here in Arkansas it was $27,500 per year when I started teaching 2 years ago. I am at experience step 2 with a masters degree and make $40,090 yearly. Arkansas does not pay insurance benefits. For my family of 3 it is just under $800 monthly. The required % minimum toward retirement, which ALL certified teachers must contribute the minimum, (not matched 100% either but at 50%) in addition to taxes, ssi, medicare, disability insurance, dental insurance, and vision makes total deductions a few dollars shy of $1700 each month. I bring home just under $2,000 a month. It seems like a lot, right? Each week I average 55 working hours. It’s not even 9 bucks an hour. As standards & adminstrations become more and more demanding to teachers it just means we work more to make less and less. My yearly pay raise isn’t even compairable to cost of living. My summers are spent doing the required 60 hours of professional development to keep my license each year. I just wanted to clarify a few of the misconceptions and broadly general statements being made.
    Do I think it is unfair that someone with a GED that works in a factory makes more? Is it unfair that their are admintrators with bare minimum experience making $30,000 to $40,000 more than some of the best teachers with 20+ year of experience. Damn right it is unfair. If I want to make “money” I can do something else. I love that even if no one else does I may make a difference for one child.

  • H K November 14th, 2011 at 12:59 pm 277

    Wow- people sure do have a lot of judgement to pass. I have been teaching for 11 years and I love it! I have taught in 3 different states (NJ, PA and FL) and it is amazing how different states, counties and school districts can be from one another. Currently I teach in PA and I truly appreciate every day. Teaching is a passion for me and there certainly are demands that require me to work for more than the 8 am- 3:45pm contractual requirements. I am not complaining about the workload because I truly love my job (and holidays, weekends and summers are truly great to have off), but at my school the parking lot starts to become full of teacher’s vehicles between 6:30 am-7:00 am, long before the kids arrive. The parking lot doesn’t empty out until well after 5, for there is always much work to me done- paperwork, emails, phonecalls, IEP meetings, staff development meetings, faculty meetings, curriculum meetings, conferences and more. That leaves little time at school for grading, project planning or lesson planning. That is usually done 1-2 hours per night, on top of a the normal 9 hour day that has already taken place. Teachers at my school run clubs for free, show up on weekends to landscape, pick up trash or have a fundraiser, spend hundreds of dollars of their own money without flinching. It is a wonderful place to work because people work hard and are there for the right reasons- to make a difference in the lives of children! I feel if people don’t want to teach and only want to complain, then they should leave the profession because they give the rest of a us a bad name. As for those that think teaching is an easy profession, then they should join it and find out for themselves. Here’s a link that might motivate you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxsOVK4syxU

  • Goldie Hart November 16th, 2011 at 11:16 pm 278

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  • MickL November 29th, 2011 at 10:04 pm 280

    I finished my masters in Architecture about 5 months ago and its been up and down in getting a full time job. I am in Texas and have really been thinking about teaching as a career. A couple of things are holding me back about working in Texas. The salaries seem awfully low as if they don’t give teachers much appreciation here. The other thing I am a bit nervous about is that they seem to be still trying to eliminate Darwin out of the text books.

  • Peter December 5th, 2011 at 2:56 pm 281

    It’s really a nice and helpful piece of info. I’m happy that you just shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

  • Sjoerd December 29th, 2011 at 8:30 pm 282

    I was looking for a job in de US as a teacher… I am a Master in Geography. But when I read all this, I think I’ll stay at home.

    We have a salary (with a Master degree after 13 years of experience) like usd.83000,- and 60 days of holiday. (But taxes are high though… 42% – 50%.) But you are completely medically covered and a total pension.

  • Jeff April 8th, 2012 at 6:05 pm 283

    Panamabound is confused. The numbers spouted sound awesome, but they are from California. Cost of living is off the charts there as in New York. Teachers should be able to live like other professionals in the areas that they teach. Also keep dreaming I teach in Indiana, no vision or dental at all and my medical is poor. Why do teachers stay: 1) they care 2)people like you don’t respect their job enough to hire them in the private sector.

  • chalene May 6th, 2012 at 1:04 pm 284

    Ok I am looking at becoming a teacher in Texas but i want to know if making the switch from my current job is worth it. I am making 38,000 right now as a Assistant manager at a grocery store. So will I make more as a teacher or is it better just to stay where im at? I love working with children but I still need to be able to support myself. Please let me know if anyone can help.. Thank you

  • avd August 25th, 2012 at 12:45 am 285

    Why aren’t NJ teacher’s salaries on here? They make other states look ridiculously low. I agree teacher salaries in other states are fairly low, but NJ teachers complain too much for getting quite a high compensation. The average teacher’s salary in NJ is around $63,000. Not too shabby for not having to work a full year and getting benefits that they don’t have to pay for along with quite the pension that the private sector doesn’t even offer. I think some of these complainers need to get a real job. Their perspective is very skewed.

  • avd August 25th, 2012 at 12:55 am 286

    I am amazed at some of the anger that some teachers (and guidance counselors) post on this site. It really disgusts me to hear them. Why? They make it sound like no one else works more than 40 hours per week. They make it sound like 100K a year for being a teacher is an “ok” life and not a “good” life. This is EXACTLY what I’m talking about. YOU ARE SO SEPARATED FROM REALITY! Take a walk around NJ and find out that the AVERAGE salary is less than what you are making! And if you’re making AVERAGE salary or more, you ARENT working 40 hours, you are working MORE. The problem these angry teachers (and guidance counselors) have is that they HAVE NOT worked in the private sector AT ALL. Very evident.

  • beverly moore November 28th, 2012 at 1:13 pm 287

    I worked 32 years as a teacher and am now retired. when I looked back and realize the lives I touched and how they touched mine, I know that I had a profession that could have paid more but then I would not have been so personally enriched by the knowledge that I live in America where what I chose was a choice and nothing made me stay with that choice except ME!!

  • cody December 4th, 2012 at 8:41 am 288

    i think a teacher should get 85,000 respectively because without them what should are society do without knowing what to do in the world today

  • Roger March 17th, 2013 at 10:47 am 289

    Keep in mind that those are big cities. In my school, teachers can make up to 90k/year. I live in a small town.

  • Don April 29th, 2013 at 11:14 pm 290

    Ive been substitute teaching for 4 years now in Southern California and I make $18000/year. I have a Master’s in Education (Mistake? We shall see…) and would make about $48,000 as a first year teacher IF hired full time. Most new teachers here are on temporary contract with no guarantee for the following year. One teacher in my district has been on a temporary contract for 8 YEARS. Those who are contracted need to wake up and stop complaining. I would kill to make the minimum on this list. I will be making the move to Colorado over summer, I have applied to over 50 OPEN positions in the past month, only a couple calls back so far, but its early in the season. I dont know if there are 50 open positions in the entire state of California. Teachers make about 10K more in CA than CO, but that is with a contract and there are none. DO NOT COME TO CALI if you want to teach. Come here to get your Credential and leave though… It’ll transfer anywhere in the U.S.

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