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Professional Pay for Teachers

Teachers are paid less than those who work in other professions requiring similar education and responsibilities.

Low teacher pay comes at a high cost for schools and kids, who lose good teachers to better-paying professions. Some 20 percent of new public school teachers leave the profession by the end of the first year, and almost half leave within five years. Pay-related turnover is especially high for minorities, males, and teachers under the age of 30.

Having highly qualified teachers is essential to student success — but who in the future will be lured into a profession with wages that start low and fail to keep pace with comparable careers?

Through its nationwide salary initiative, NEA is advocating for a $40,000 starting salary for all pre-K-12 teachers, and appropriate professional pay for higher education faculty and staff.