Teachers waiting to see which pay raise proposal becomes law

Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 7:39 PM CST
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Teachers spoke out and state legislators listened.

This legislative session is off to a promising start with two significant pay increase proposals for teachers.

Here is what the state senate proposes for a pay increase:

  • Minimum starting salary of $40,000 after year two of the phase-in
  • Average salary increase of $4,700 after year two of the phase-in
  • $500 step increase for all teachers most years
  • Larger increase at five-year year intervals.

That means at five-year intervals bachelor’s degree would see $1,325 increase, master’s $1,425, specialist degree $1,525, and doctorate five-year interval bump would mean $1,625.

Adrienne Mobley, instructional facilitator at North Jones Elementary School, said those five-year intervals may be the key to keeping teachers not only in Mississippi, but in the profession.

“Having a step up for everyone who stays in education for over the next few years, five, 10, 15, 20, 25 years, is gonna help out and you will retain high-quality teachers,” Mobley said

The House saw the Senate’s proposal and raised its increase in teacher’s pay by $4,000 to $6,000 a year.

The House bill passed Wednesday afternoon. That kind of bump would make Mississippi’s starting teacher pay higher than the Southeastern and national averages.

Nancy Loome, executive director of Parents’ Campaign, A Parent and Public School Advocacy Group, said that kind of proposal is coming at a critical point she’s never seen before.

“For the first time that I am aware of, we’ve had quite a few teachers across the state just throw in the towel in the middle of the school year and say, ’I just can’t do this anymore’”.

Loome and Mobley both said they didn’t want to get ahead of themselves with everything far from a done deal.

However, they say all signs are very positive.

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