Are teachers underpaid? Teacher pay

Are teachers underpaid?
Teacher pay has no relationship to effectiveness, nor do teachers earn more for expertise in math, science, special ed and other high-demand specialties. Salaries are tied to college credits past the BA and seniority, neither of which correlates well with teachers’ ability to teach. Two Education Next writers look at whether teachers are underpaid.

In addition, economist Michael Podgursky analyzes union data on what teachers earn: $43,250 for the average teacher in 2000-01, according to the American Federation of Teachers. Including staff training and planning days, most public school teachers work less than 190 days per year, compared to 240 days for other professionals. Teachers report an average of 38 hours a week of on-site work. Like other professionals, teachers do a lot of work at home. The flexibility to work at home is an attractive feature, especially for women with children at home, writes Podgursky.

The combination of a shorter workday and work year means that the annual hours on the job for teachers are much shorter than in comparable professions. . . . By (Bureau of Labor Statistics) calculations, only engineers, architects, and surveyors in private practice and attorneys earn more than teachers on an hourly basis.

The median pay for new teachers — about $29,000 — is only about 10 percent less than the $32,000 median for other college graduates entering the workforce, Podgursky writes. Teachers’ work year is 30 percent shorter and benefits are more generous.

Private school teachers earn less. Of course, the job is considerably easier because private school students come from more advantaged, education-focused families. Podgursky compared private school pay with salaries of public school teachers at low-poverty suburban schools.

Private school teachers now start at salaries that are 76 percent of their public school counterparts. This increases to 87 percent by their 12th year and declines thereafter. These results suggest that compared with the private sector, public schools overreward high levels of experience.

Via Teacher Quality Bulletin, which also links to an article on the correlation between well-educated teachers and well-educated students.

A majority of physical science and history teachers didn’t major or minor in the subjects they’re teaching.

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Comments

  1. I totally agree with your comments. I am sick of hearing teachers whine and cry about their pay. I have a bachelor’s degree….I am an accountant….and I worked over 2500 hours last year and earned a measly $26,000. It’s irks me to hear a teacher, making $38,000-$50,000 and working only 175 days, moan and groan about their low pay!

  2. I totally agree with your comments. I am sick of hearing teachers whine and cry about their pay. I have a bachelor’s degree….I am an accountant….and I worked over 2500 hours last year and earned a measly $26,000. It’s irks me to hear a teacher, making $38,000-$50,000 and working only 175 days, moan and groan about their low pay!

  3. Just remember who taught you to become an accountant or nasa engineer. A teacher.

  4. Just remember who taught you to become an accountant or nasa engineer. A teacher.

  5. To find the answer to your question, TEACH.

    You will find that teachers are under paid.

  6. To find the answer to your question, TEACH.

    You will find that teachers are under paid.

  7. Nathan,
    You have obviously have no idea about what teachers do. Teachers are underpaid for the amount of work they do and the responsibility they have. Thank you John and Meghan for your support!

  8. Nathan,
    You have obviously have no idea about what teachers do. Teachers are underpaid for the amount of work they do and the responsibility they have. Thank you John and Meghan for your support!

  9. Nathan think about this if a teacher where to get paid what a babysitter makes.
    $3.25hr x 32 kids x 7hrs. a day x 165 days=$120,120
    that is just something for you to think about

  10. Nathan think about this if a teacher where to get paid what a babysitter makes.
    $3.25hr x 32 kids x 7hrs. a day x 165 days=$120,120
    that is just something for you to think about

  11. Jennifer says:

    Nathan, I am a first year teacher, working part time, making 16,000 a year and I work at least 7 hrs. a day to get everything ready. I definitly feel that teachers are under paid. Try to remember the significance teachers can have on your child’s life.

  12. Jennifer says:

    Nathan, I am a first year teacher, working part time, making 16,000 a year and I work at least 7 hrs. a day to get everything ready. I definitly feel that teachers are under paid. Try to remember the significance teachers can have on your child’s life.

  13. Teachers have permament job security, early retirment, full health coverage, extended vacations, and do not pay social security taxes.

    By the way does anyone know a poor public school teacher.

    They are overpaid

  14. Teachers have permament job security, early retirment, full health coverage, extended vacations, and do not pay social security taxes.

    By the way does anyone know a poor public school teacher.

    They are overpaid

  15. All I can say, is that the teachers that teach at my kids school aren’t worth their pay. They let the foreign students do what ever they want. They even let them copy homework from the English speaking kids. What kind of teaching is that? Yet they are driving nice big SUVs, Mercedes Benz, and BMWs.

    The way I look at it is, if teachers are not making the money they think they deserve, then move on to another profession. This is not anything new. When I was a kid, going to school, I remember hearing the same complaints about not being paid enough. So, the teachers knew, or should have known, about this problem before they became teachers. And if the teachers are really teaching to help the children get an education, then why are they complaining about being underpaid. The fact that they are helping to educate someone that needs an education should be rewarding enough.

    Bottom line is, this problem is not anything new, but yet there are still thousands of people coming out of the universities wanting to teach. So, are the teachers in it for the money or because they want to teach? If you are in it to teach, then stop complaining about the money! If it’s money you rally care about, then find another profession!

  16. All I can say, is that the teachers that teach at my kids school aren’t worth their pay. They let the foreign students do what ever they want. They even let them copy homework from the English speaking kids. What kind of teaching is that? Yet they are driving nice big SUVs, Mercedes Benz, and BMWs.

    The way I look at it is, if teachers are not making the money they think they deserve, then move on to another profession. This is not anything new. When I was a kid, going to school, I remember hearing the same complaints about not being paid enough. So, the teachers knew, or should have known, about this problem before they became teachers. And if the teachers are really teaching to help the children get an education, then why are they complaining about being underpaid. The fact that they are helping to educate someone that needs an education should be rewarding enough.

    Bottom line is, this problem is not anything new, but yet there are still thousands of people coming out of the universities wanting to teach. So, are the teachers in it for the money or because they want to teach? If you are in it to teach, then stop complaining about the money! If it’s money you rally care about, then find another profession!

  17. Karlene says:

    Oh, put a lid on it Tim and Steve. Granted there are teachers out there who shouldn’t be in the profession at all, but overall, teachers are deninately underpaid because they put up with a lot of crap from indisciplined children whose parents/guardian have no time for them. These are the problem children that teachers have to deal with on a daily basis. Not only do the teachers have to deal with indisciplined children, but also parents. Teachers get mistreated by parents aslo because they feel their child deserved some sort of accolade when they do not.

    Teachers in the inner cities have bigger problems because of gangs in the schools. Students carrying weapons to take out the teacher or their peers for whatever. I commend all teachers on their bravery on going out into the jungle (classroom) on a daily basis. Remember you educated the Presidents, the Supreme Court Judges, all doctors, and I could go on and on.

  18. Karlene says:

    Oh, put a lid on it Tim and Steve. Granted there are teachers out there who shouldn’t be in the profession at all, but overall, teachers are deninately underpaid because they put up with a lot of crap from indisciplined children whose parents/guardian have no time for them. These are the problem children that teachers have to deal with on a daily basis. Not only do the teachers have to deal with indisciplined children, but also parents. Teachers get mistreated by parents aslo because they feel their child deserved some sort of accolade when they do not.

    Teachers in the inner cities have bigger problems because of gangs in the schools. Students carrying weapons to take out the teacher or their peers for whatever. I commend all teachers on their bravery on going out into the jungle (classroom) on a daily basis. Remember you educated the Presidents, the Supreme Court Judges, all doctors, and I could go on and on.

  19. I think that teachers are definitely under paid because there day doesn’t stop at 3 o clock. There days usually consist of working for about 10-15 hours. Plus they are responsible for the training needed to get a job.

  20. I think that teachers are definitely under paid because there day doesn’t stop at 3 o clock. There days usually consist of working for about 10-15 hours. Plus they are responsible for the training needed to get a job.

  21. I have to agree that teachers are underpaid. Most teachers must pay for supplies for their classroom out of their own pocket. In addition, with the pay rate at what it is now, the quality of teachers will be lower

  22. I have to agree that teachers are underpaid. Most teachers must pay for supplies for their classroom out of their own pocket. In addition, with the pay rate at what it is now, the quality of teachers will be lower

  23. MrVerde says:

    So much hostility between groups. I am a teacher and think we are fairly paid. Not over or underpaid. If you break it down per hour it’s a pretty good salary. I also don’t buy the argument I’ve heard before that teachers have to work 3 extra hours a day making up lesson plans, etc, etc. You have prep time and then maybe stay 30 minutes after school’s out to finish some things up.

    Plus dealing with kids is not an argument to say teachers are underpaid. In the corportate world you deal with grouchy, crabby clients or people all the time as well which can be just as bad as kids. It’s comparing apples to oranges. Each job has its difficulties and rewards. Teachers are fairly paid.

  24. MrVerde says:

    So much hostility between groups. I am a teacher and think we are fairly paid. Not over or underpaid. If you break it down per hour it’s a pretty good salary. I also don’t buy the argument I’ve heard before that teachers have to work 3 extra hours a day making up lesson plans, etc, etc. You have prep time and then maybe stay 30 minutes after school’s out to finish some things up.

    Plus dealing with kids is not an argument to say teachers are underpaid. In the corportate world you deal with grouchy, crabby clients or people all the time as well which can be just as bad as kids. It’s comparing apples to oranges. Each job has its difficulties and rewards. Teachers are fairly paid.