Kudos to our talented staff member Josh Taylor for creating this terrific graphic showing how Mississippi’s average teacher salary compares to teacher salaries in other Southeastern states. Need we say more?
In September, the Senate Education Committee will meet to hear from experts on teacher compensation, with a goal of crafting a plan to make Mississippi’s teacher salaries competitive across the Southeast. In August, the Senate Finance Committee will meet to vet the House proposal to eliminate the income tax – a plan that could strip hundreds of millions of dollars from state revenue and thwart the effort to improve teacher pay.
Mississippi is in the midst of a frightening teacher shortage, driven largely by salaries so low that teachers must work two jobs just to pay their bills. It is hard to understand how our elected leaders could take any action that has the potential to reduce state revenue when our teachers are so poorly paid that they live in economic distress.
Our teachers have given so selflessly for our children, and they are now headed into a new year with a monumental challenge ahead of them as they work to counter the devastating impact of a seemingly endless pandemic. It’s time for us all, legislators included, to stand up for Mississippi teachers and insist that they be compensated fairly BEFORE any tax cut is considered. Together, we’ve got this!