UPDATED: MS Senate passes $230M teacher raise plan

Published 4:35 pm Wednesday, March 2, 2022

The Mississippi Senate unanimously advanced a $230 million teacher pay raise plan with bipartisan support Wednesday. This is the third time senators have sent legislation proposing a significant raise for teachers to the House for consideration during the 2022 Legislative session.

“The future of Mississippi is in our children and those who educate them,” Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann said. “Giving teachers a raise continues to be a priority for the Senate.”

Brookhaven Public School District Superintendent Dr. Rod Henderson agreed. “Today’s news is a huge step in the right direction for teachers and teacher assistants,” he said. “They have deserved this for way too long.”

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Under the legislation, teachers would receive a $4,800 raise on average through the base pay salary schedule after a two-year phase in:

  • Class A baccalaureate-degreed teachers would start at $40,000.
  • All teachers would also receive $500 step increases at most every year, including in the first three years of teaching. Step increases are not provided in the current salary schedule until the third year of teaching, though many leave the profession before Year 5.
  • At years 5, 10, 15, and 20, teachers would receive a larger increase based on their certification.
    • Class A teachers (baccalaureate) would receive $1,325
    • Class AA teachers (master’s degree) would receive $1,425
    • Class AAA (specialist) would receive $1,525
    • Class AAAA (doctoral) would receive $1,625
    • At 25 years of service, teachers would receive an increase of $2,500.

Teacher assistants would receive a $2,000 raise under the bill.

“We held listening sessions during the fall at which teachers provided us with their concerns and recommendations,” Senate Education Chairman Dennis DeBar said. “This plan was developed for teachers by teachers.”

The base salary schedule does not include any local supplements teachers receive or state supplements, like extra compensation to locate in critical needs areas or become a National Board Certified Teacher.

“Our teachers and staff always work extremely hard and these last couple of years they have gone above and beyond to meet the needs of our students,” said Lincoln County School District Superintendent David Martin. “They were well deserving of a raise prior to COVID, but have shown their dedication to our students and state during these unprecedented times. The governor and legislatures have stated repeatedly that we have a budget surplus. They should come together and do the right thing for our teachers and education and increase teacher pay.”

Though this teacher pay rate plan has excited many, some plan to wait before celebrating.

“Although I am pleased by this news, I must reserve my enthusiasm until the bill clears the House review and is finally signed by the governor,” Henderson said.