The teacher pay gap is growing: Teachers are now paid 18.7% less than comparable professions

The teacher pay gap is growing, according to a  new analysis, and teachers nationwide are now paid 18.7% less than people in comparable professions. That is an increase from 17% three years ago. “The erosion of teacher pay relative to that of comparable workers in the last couple of years — and in fact since 2008 — reflects state policy decisions (mainly tax cuts) rather than the result of revenue challenges brought on by the Great Recession,” according to the analysis by the the Economic Policy Institute.

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Democrats propose $100 billion for schools and to boost educator salaries while safeguarding bargaining rights

In the wake of teacher unrest throughout the nation, Democratic lawmakers on Tuesday proposed a plan to direct $100 billion toward public schools and educators’ salaries while safeguarding their right to bargain collectively through their unions on salaries, benefits and working conditions.

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Teachers say they are overwhelmed by constant policy changes

Nearly all respondents to an Education Week survey — 86 percent — said they had experienced new changes or reforms in the past two school years, and 58 percent said the changes are “way too much” or “too much.” The teachers surveyed were most likely to say they’d had changes to their teacher-evaluation systems. Other common areas for reform were curriculum, professional development, and state testing.

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Wisconsin’s anti-collective bargaining law has significantly lowered teacher pay, increased teacher turnover rates and likely harmed student achievement, new study finds

“As a result of Act 10, teachers receive significantly lower compensation, turnover rates are much higher, and teacher experience has dropped significantly,” Wisconsin Senate Democratic Leader Jennifer Shilling said at the release of a new study that documents how the 2011 anti-collective bargaining law has harmed Wisconsin. “Rather than encouraging the best and the brightest to become teachers and remain in the field throughout their career, Act 10 has demonized and devalued the teaching profession and driven away many teachers.” The study was released by the Center for American Progress.

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Teachers make far less than other similarly educated professionals, report finds

Teachers in the United States make less than 60 cents on every dollar made by other professionals with comparable education levels, according to new data from the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation. In addition, U.S. teachers work longer hours, at every grade level, than teachers in other countries, according to the OECD’s annual “Education at a Glance” report.

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Janesville teachers applaud school board vote to scrap teacher ‘merit pay’ system linked to Educator Effectiveness program

The Janesville Education Association applauded a unanimous decision by the school board this week to scrap a system that tied teacher compensation to the state’s Educator Effectiveness program. Janesville Education Association President Dave Groth, a science teacher at Janesville Parker High School, said the JEA looks forward to working collaboratively with school district administrators and board members “to create a teacher compensation system that is fair, predictable and rewards loyalty to the district and professional development to ensure the children in Janesville school district have the best professional educators.”

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Higher pay, more respect, better training needed to address substitute teacher shortage, educators say

Higher pay, more respect, better training and clearer expectations would to a long way toward solving the national substitute teacher shortage. At least that’s the opinion of educators who commented this week on a WEAC Facebook post about the national shortage of subs and the challenges that is presenting to schools at all grade levels.

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Report shows when tenure ends, teachers leave

A new analysis suggests that tenure reform in Louisiana increased the overall exit rate for teachers, especially those with the most experience. Schools with lower standardized test scores had higher rates of teacher exits, meaning that these schools were disproportionately impacted.

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Educators discuss Act 10’s impact on the teaching profession

The latest article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel series on Act 10 examines the impact on the teaching profession and includes interviews with several WEAC members. It begins: “Educators eager to blame Gov. Scott Walker’s Act 10 for the declining supply of teachers say the evidence is obvious and convincing. In 2015, four years after the law’s collective-bargaining limits reshaped the profession, the smallest group of juniors and seniors in two decades was enrolled in teaching programs at the state’s public universities. Some 25% of school districts are reporting an ‘extreme shortage’ of job-seekers for key positions.”

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‘We must stop financially under-valuing teachers in this country’

Teachers in this country are financially under-valued, and it needs to stop, says Nínive Calegari, a former classroom teacher who is the founder of The Teacher Salary Project. In a column in the Washingtost Post, Calegari writes: “What does it mean when we live in a society when those who are trusted to take care of our future professionals are a part of our newly minted working poor? … A teacher is the most important part of any school and undermining her financially is not allowing her to do her best work.”

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