In honor of National Teacher Appreciation Week, I thought I’d focus my first blog post on the most obvious way North Carolina shows its appreciation (or lack thereof) for teachers: the North Carolina teacher salary schedule. In particular, let’s take a closer look at Governor McCrory’s 2016-17 Proposed Teacher Salary Schedule.
On the positive side, the McCrory administration has been refreshingly honest in its description of this salary proposal, touting it as an average pay increase of 5%. While McCrory proposes providing a number of one-time bonuses to teachers in FY 2016-17, the dollars for these bonuses are not included in the 5% figure. While not all teachers would receive a salary increase under the governor’s plan, the average teacher would indeed receive a recurring salary increase of 5%.
Also, a 5% salary increase is decent. Of course, a 5% salary increase is insufficient to bring teacher salaries to the national average, or to equal the inflation-adjusted average salaries of years’ past. However, if North Carolina made a sustained effort to increase teacher salaries 5% per year every year, rather than just in election years, North Carolina’s teacher salaries would eventually surpass the national average (though it would likely take nearly ten years).
Within McCrory’s teacher salary schedule there are faults, however. Read more