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Mississippi governor signs $1,500 pay raise for teachers

(AP) — Mississippi Republican Gov. Phil Bryant says he has signed a bill to give teachers and assistant teachers a $1,500 pay raise during the year that begins July 1.

Bryant’s Twitter account posted a photo of him signing Senate Bill 2770 on Tuesday, nearly three weeks after legislators agreed on the plan. The account also posted the statement: “Good teachers can change the trajectory of a student’s life forever.”

The Mississippi Department of Education says that before the raises, teachers in the state received an average of $44,659, which is less than the Southeastern average of about $51,000.

The minimum salary for assistant teachers has long been frozen at $12,500. That will increase to $14,000.

The Mississippi Department of Education says there are 31,000 classroom teachers and 3,500 assistants statewide.