Report Roundup

Teachers Face Slow, Uphill Salary Climb, Study Finds

"Smart Money: What Teachers Make, How Long It Takes and What It Buys Them"

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

A new report from the National Council on Teacher Quality dissects salary schedules from across the nation's biggest school districts to find where and how teachers can maximize their salaries.

The NCTQ, a Washington-based research and advocacy group, found that when a salary grows slowly, that creates an adverse effect on retirement; the more money you make earlier in your career, the more you can invest for the future. In that regard, teachers are much worse off than doctors or lawyers, the report indicates: By age 42, a teacher is earning about half of his or her highest income. Lawyers and doctors are making 80 percent of their top salary by that age.

Districts showed wide discrepancies in how quickly teachers could reach a $75,000 salary, which is the average district maximum, according to the NCTQ's calculations. On average, the report says, it takes teachers 24 years to reach their maximum pay. In Boston, it takes just seven years. In Oklahoma City, it takes 31 years—or almost the entire length of a teacher's career.

Cost of living also affects how much teachers get for their salary. For example, the actual starting salary for a teacher in San Francisco, which is known for being expensive, is $47,425. The NCTQ uses a cost-of-living adjustment to make that only $18,165.

The report authors, meanwhile, praised Columbus, Ohio, schools for giving teachers the most "bang for the buck," with the highest adjusted salary, $100,400, that teachers can earn in the shortest amount of time, 10 years.

Vol. 34, Issue 14, Page 5

Published in Print: December 10, 2014, as Teachers Face Slow, Uphill Salary Climb, Study Finds
Related Stories
Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories