Teachers Aren’t Surviving From Teaching

Today was Kory’s first day back in the classroom, but not her first day back on the job. In fact, her full-time position as a teacher is but one of three of Kory’s jobs.

“I basically do three jobs: I teach, I’m a Mom, and I drive Lyft. And those are the three jobs. And those three jobs cannot co-exist; something is getting squeezed.”

Kory’s Story is the first of several new short films from The Teacher Salary Project, a “nonpartisan organization dedicated to raising awareness around the impact of our national policy of underpaying and under- valuing educators.” The project is a continuation of the work of journalist Daniel Mouthrop, 826 National co-founder and former educator Ninive Calegari, and acclaimed writer Dave Eggers. Their co-authored bestselling book Teachers Have it Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of American Teachers was succeeded by the documentary American Teacher produced by Calegari and Eggers, narrated by Matt Damon, and produced and directed by the Academy Award winning director Vanessa Roth.

How bad is it for teacher’s like Kory? According to the sourced fact sheet on the project’s website:

  • Teachers make 14% less than those with equal levels of education in similar professions.
  • Teachers work an average of ten hours per day and 52 hours per week.
  • Teachers are priced out of home ownership in 32 metropolitan areas.
  • 92.4% of teachers spent their own money on their students of classrooms during the 2007–2008 school year
  • The average starting salary for teachers in our country is $39,000; the average ending salary — after 25 years in the profession — is $67,000.

Watch Kory’s story before discovering how your state fairs when it comes to professional pay through the project’s Governors Challenge initiative.