From the desk of Senator Joyce Waddell

NC Teacher Pay Lags Behind National Average

Joyce Waddell

CHARLOTTE, NC – According to a report released by the National Education Association, North Carolina teacher pay is projected to climb two spots in the national rankings. With the average teacher pay increasing over $50,000 for the first time, North Carolina is ranked 37th nationally in teacher pay. The state’s average salary for teacher pay is $50,861, an increase from $49,970 last school year. The average salary for a teacher in the United States is $60,483. Although some changes have been made, North Carolina continues to lag $9,600 below the national average. When adjusted for inflation, North Carolina teacher pay has decreased more than 9.4 percent since 2009.

In addition to teacher pay, per-pupil spending in North Carolina is ranked 39th in the country at $9,528, more than $2,300 behind the national average. Spending for schools’ operational expenses has also decreased a half-percentage point. It is estimated that North Carolina faces more than $8 billion in infrastructure needs alone.

Senator Joyce Waddell has three decades of experience in education. She is a member of the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee that will meet on May 1. Legislators will return to Raleigh for the North Carolina General Assembly’s short session on May 16.

“Although some progress has been made, we still have a long way to go. More needs to be done to ensure that students have access to the resources they need, and teachers, especially those who are highly experienced, are properly compensated for their dedication and hard work. I look forward to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee meeting and short session to address concerns about teacher pay,” said Senator Joyce Waddell.