What If America’s Teachers Made More Money?

Alia Wong:

In Oklahoma, Governor Mary Fallin’s proposed budget would allocate $178 million in new money to support a $3,000 raise for every teacher in the state, where teachers earned about $44,000 on average in 2012. “In this unprecedented teacher shortage, it is absolutely critical that we as a state address teacher compensation and give teachers a stronger reason to stay in Oklahoma classrooms,” state schools Superintendent Joy Hofmeister was quoted as saying in response to the plan. In South Dakota, home to the country’s lowest teacher salaries, Governor Dennis Daugaard wants to raise the sales tax by half a cent in an effort to increase teacher pay to $48,500. Tennessee and New Mexico are considering similar proposals, and a controversial bill is making its way through Indiana’s legislature that would in part allow teachers to negotiate extra pay.