Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Low wages in Texas lead to teacher shortages

Low teacher pay leave teachers and schools struggling

Texas has recently been going through a teacher shortage with more teachers quitting and less teachers coming in than ever before. 

One of the reasons is the pay, with the average salary for Texas teachers being around $46,275 to $67,453 annually according to While the cost of living in Texas is at roughly $80,000, according to some banks and Texas companies.

“We have to go through all these certification tests and different courses to be a teacher,” Lewisville teacher Sarah Saiki said. “Along with not being compensated with fair wages for the time and money that they put into the job.”

In a recent survey by the Texas State Teachers Association, 85% of teachers surveyed said that they do not feel supported by the government and legislators.

“I think a big part of it is state governments and national governments sometimes can make it difficult for teachers to do their job to the best of their ability,” Harmon High School teacher Josh Crow said. “In terms of putting stress on things, that makes it more difficult for everyone involved.”

One contributing factor of this wage issue is that many teachers haven’t gotten a raise in years. The New York Times reported that many teachers are only recently getting their first pay raise in decades.

“You’re competing with industry, and industry generally pays better,” robotics teacher Casey McCluskey said. “When you’re a kid coming out of high school and industry offers this much and teaching offers this much and those numbers are radically different, you have to do what’s good for you, and that right now would be industry. I mean, we’ve got kids making $20 an hour with no education at all, and college education is really expensive.

The scale of this issue has reached the point where students are becoming worried about their teacher’s wellbeing.

“Last year, I had a teacher who is a single mom and it’s sort of disheartening,” junior Matthew Phillips said. “The stress takes a physical toll on them, even just statistically the amount that they get paid is in a bracket where they are incredibly unhappy.”

In more rural areas, districts are finding it so difficult to keep teachers at their jobs they have switched to a four-day work week. Some students say that this is a wonderful idea, and that districts should even cut down on summer time to give all students Fridays off. However, some teachers are not nearly as enthusiastic about it.

“Taking a day off would just increase achievement gaps and we would just see lower teacher morale because they are not feeling accomplished at the end of the year and at the end of the day,” Saiki said.

Regardless of their working conditions, many teachers continue to love their jobs.

“I know I love my job, and I used to do something else before this,” Crow said. “I was in advertising for 10 years and I made a career change 5 years ago and went into this line of work because I come from a long line of educators, and I wanted to make a difference. And I’m glad I did.”

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