We all know that teachers are overworked, underpaid and often undervalued.

As an ex-first grade teacher (5 years at a title one school in Cheyenne) I know first hand that teachers are in the business of changing lives, not making money.

Despite this, I have some good news for teachers, and consequently parents, in Wyoming.

According to this article from Berkeley.edu, there is a major negative difference between teacher salaries and the salaries of other professionals with the same level of education. This picture clearly shows the discrepancy.

Photo Credit: Berkeley.edu
Photo Credit: Berkeley.edu

For example, in Washington state teachers make 31.6 % less than other professionals with the same level of education. The difference isn't just seen in overall pay but in an actual loss of pay over the years!

The level of average weekly wages of public school teachers (adjusted for inflation) decreased $21 from 1996 to 2018, from $1,216 to $1,195. In contrast, weekly wages of all other college graduates rose by $323, from $1,454 to $1,777 over this period.

The result of this low pay is a massive teacher shortage across the nation, which means larger class size and teachers that may be less qualified being placed in the classroom.

Good news for Wyoming...we ranked the highest in the United States for fairness of pay. Our teachers are only paid .2% less than their peers with the same level of education.

Not only that, Wyoming teachers are among the highest paid in the nation with many starting at over $45,000. On average, teachers in New York State receive the same starting salary as teachers in Wyoming, but the cost of living is nearly 20% higher.

This is good news for our teachers and Wyoming's schools!

If a career in education sounds like a path you'd like to take, I'm a proud University of Wyoming Alumni and can confidently recommend their College of Education ;)

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