Monday, August 12, 2013

Teacher Flight

Fifty states in the union and North Carolina ranks fifty-first in teacher salaries. (District of Columbia in case you wondered.) That’s not a statistic to brag about or to attract twenty-first century thinkers who create jobs who bring up the economic level who…you get the picture.

Let’s look back a few years to 1957, in an article by Lynn Nisbet of the Raleigh Bureau of the News-Herald when Governor Luther Hodges stated that in the previous decade the average teacher salaries went from 28th place to 39th. He insisted the budget was as high as the state should go in paying teachers and that the local counties should assume any additional pay. School improvement would have to come from them, not the state.
He did “deplore the loss of competent teachers to other states.”
He did “fear the scale would slip further down the comparative ladder unless the communities assumed a larger share of the school costs.”
He did “know this idea is not popular and might not get votes.”
He did “distribute a memorandum comparing North Carolina’s per capita income, average teacher salaries, and the part paid by the state with data from five other states.”
He did “point out that their state teacher salaries were lower, but local units supplemented funds.”
He did “claim that in North Carolina, the local contribution averaged a mere $148.”
His goal to make the local units more accountable was across the board unpopular, to say the least. The more wealthy city systems cried foul because it increased their budgets, although it did relieve them from shouldering the expenses of poorer areas. The rural county systems had even less resources to draw from and could never compete for teachers under this plan.

Teacher flight had begun.
That was then. This is now. From 39th to 51st? Governor Hodges would be appalled.
Catch of the day,

No comments:

Post a Comment