There is no denying that teachers can have a dramatic impact on our children. We depend on them to educate and nurture our future leaders, but are we taking good care of our teachers?
The Maryland school system was ranked number one in the nation by Education Week magazine for five years in a row (2008–2012) but has since been in a slow decline. In early 2018 Education Week ranked Maryland number six. Much of the decline has to do with decreased funding levels, although during the 2018 Maryland Legislative Session, Governor Hogan boasted, “In this budget, we put a record $6.5 billion into K-12 education, which is above and beyond the spending formula being proposed by Legislature.”
Yet teachers struggle to pay their bills. They are taking part-time jobs at Starbucks and Whole Foods, or as summer camp counselors or tutors. According to the Maryland State Education Association, some 40 percent of teachers have a second job. After this year’s teacher strikes in West Virginia and Oklahoma, teachers are speaking up all over the country, asking their local legislators to fund the budgets for teachers according to what they’re worth.
So, we decided to take a look at the state of affairs in Maryland, specifically in our main readership area—Anne Arundel, Howard, Prince George’s, Calvert and Queen Anne’s counties—to find out how much money these counties are spending on students, what teachers are making, how counties appropriate their resources on education, and how teachers’ pay stacks up with comparable jobs.
Here’s how entry-level teachers stack up against other careers that require a Bachelor’s degree, and two that don’t.
What happens to salaries as teachers earn their Masters degrees?
What about the children? Here’s what these counties spend per student.
When you look at the difference in cost per student and salaries for teachers, it’s also interesting to look at where each county gets its funds, and how much of its own money it spends on education.
For more on how schools budget, and why it’s so important to you as a parent, citizen and voter, head to our School Funding 101 piece.