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Are teachers underpaid?

Updated on April 14, 2012

I Believe Teachers are Underpaid!

I used to be a high school teacher before becoming a stay at home mom, so I'm a bit biased on this debate. I have yet to find another job in the area in which I live that requires a bachelor's degree and pays less than a teacher. One day while paying the bills, I began to realize that if my husband and I divorced, I would lose my car because my salary wasn't enough to cover rent, groceries, utilities, and a car payment. It's insane.

There are many problems with our nation's public school system. I saw that when I was teaching. I believe that we would get more quality educators if we would pay them more. Many good teachers quit and do something that pays more money. I was one of those teachers. I quit because my salary was too small to have paying daycare fees for 2 kids make any sort of sense at all.

Something else that the general population is unaware of is that most teachers spend around 20% of their salary on teaching materials. The government does not provide teachers with money to buy teaching supplies and education materials. As a teacher, I even bought a classroom set of novels from Barnes & Noble because the school lacked the funds to purchase the book I wanted to teach.

I know that some of you will think that teachers are over paid because they get summer vacation and their workday ends at 3:30 every day. But, what many people don't realize is that teachers work way past 3:30. It takes time to grade papers and prepare lessons. Many teachers work well past 5:00 in fact. There were many times that I was still grading papers at 10:00 at night. In addition to working late, being a teacher requires participation in extra curricular activities. Some school districts require teachers to attend all of the home football, basketball, and baseball games. Many people also believe that summer vacation is still 3 months, and that's not true either. The only full month teachers get of summer is July. Many teachers work till mid June and start back up in mid August. Also, I know a lot of teachers that teach summer school during their summer break because they need the money.

Image: Carlos Porto /

Teachers are Important to Modern Society, Pay Them Accordingly!

Teachers make all other professions possible. If it is a profession that is necessary for society to run smoothly (doctor, lawyer, astronaut, scientist, policeman, get the idea), rest assured that we would not have them without teachers.

Do You Think Public School Teachers Are Underpaid? - Sound Off Here

I know some states pay their teachers better than others. Also, tough school districts sometimes pay more because it's harder for them to get teachers. But, to give you a frame of reference when I last taught in 2005 I was paid $24,000 a year. And that's before health insurance costs and taxes. In my opinion, it is a disgrace for any position that requires a Bachelor's degree to be paid so low.

Are teachers underpaid?

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Did you ever have a teacher that inspired you?

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Reasons Why Teachers Deserve More Pay

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Teachers Inspire
Teachers Inspire

Teachers Work Long Hours

Teachers Work Long Hours
Teachers Work Long Hours

Teachers Care

Teachers Care
Teachers Care

Teachers Prepare Students for the Real World

Teachers Prepare Students for the Real World
Teachers Prepare Students for the Real World

Should a Teacher's Performance Affect their Pay? - Should Good Teachers Get Paid Accordingly?

Should a teacher's pay be based off of their performance?

Leave your comments, suggestions, and well-wishes here.


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