Maybe you won’t need that summer job after all. A new report by the Manhattan Institute, a conservative New York think tank, finds that teachers actually have it pretty good. Who knew? The report, which looked at data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, found that teachers’ average hourly wage in 2005 was $34.06—roughly $9 more than the average for other white-collar workers. “It’s a widely held belief that public school teachers are horribly paid,” said Jay P. Greene, one of the report’s authors. “The facts are public school teachers make more than other professionals.” The study, which purports to make no judgment about whether teachers make too much, also says that paying teachers more does not correlate with higher graduation rates or student test scores. Teachers’ union officials were quick to take issue with the findings, saying the report used flawed methodology and did not account for extra hours worked or advanced degrees held. A teachers’ union study of labor data “found that teachers earned $20,000 below the average of other white-collar professional jobs,” according to the spokeswoman for the Iowa State Education Association.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.