Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Survey Says.....Time for Teacher Raises

In a characteristically reticent piece in yesterday's Capital, the editorial board announced the results of the salary survey committee put together by Superintendent Eric Smith and begrudgingly confessed its implications: County residents have gotten off easily for the last decade, skimping on teachers' cost-of-living increases, and now it's time to pay the piper.

Over the last 10 years, Anne Arundel County had the lowest cost of living increases of all 24 state school districts, 9 percentage points (26 percent) below the state median. What does this mean in practical terms? It's going to cost several million additional dollars a year (~$30 million over 5 years) to get teacher salaries up to $38,307, which will make them the fifth-highest in the state for the time being.

Of course, the median home price in the county has climbed to $330,000. Now, if we can only figure out a way to warm teachers up to the idea of group housing, perhaps we can find places for them to live on their "generous" increases.



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