Last week after we published our story on teacher pay and the lax requirements for achieving a teaching certificate we expected a crush of negative email and phone calls from irate teachers and the supporting public. To our surprise we received just two emails, one agreeing on the lax requirements, and another pointing out that a recent paper agreed with our findings that teachers were well paid considering the cost of living rates in Oklahoma.
The report found that teacher pay was ranked 30th when adjusted for cost of living in each state and ranked 19th for teacher starting pay. We also rank considerably higher than the surrounding states. Even a modest pay raise of $2000 per year would catapult Oklahoma above other states once the cost of living is considered. Oregon as an example pays teachers $15,000 more than Oklahoma, 34% higher, but Oregon cost of living is 49% higher than the cost of living in Oklahoma.
Plus the study used the latest available data for teacher pay, 2013 so the state is doing far better than the education mafia would want us to believe. This is their tactic for ratcheting up pay, poor mouth and use misleading statistics to get a raise for one state's teachers then use that as leverage to shame the other states into stripping more of the state budget into education.
And who wrote this new paper showing Oklahoma at 30th in teacher pay? A group of college professors out of OSU and one wonders how much vitriol they are going to face as this paper spreads. On Facebook it is nearly impossible to bring up teacher pay and state the facts without being inundated by a howling mob of teachers attempting to close the thread and get posts removed by escalating and name calling.
The group also has an excellent paper on college tuition and how students are leaving college with massive debt and unrealistic job availability for their degrees. Visit this link for more information. Click on "Changing the Convesation" for more info on the college tuition paper.