BLOG ARCHIVE ABOUT ANDREW RICE SIGN PETITION THE JIM INHOFE CATASTROPHE

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Let's start with the good news: North Carolina's public school teachers are getting pay raises for only the second time since 2008. On average, the boost will be 7 percent.The Republican controlled General Assembly really had no choice. The outcry over its 2013 performance, when it froze teacher pay while enacting major tax cuts that favored the affluent, was loud and sustained.On top of that, this is an election year. Who wants to run for re election trying to defend a record on education when teacher pay is near the bottom in the nation? "We're No. 46" is not much of a campaign slogan.Legislative leaders claim this is the largest raise in North Carolina history. That might be true in terms of absolute dollars. After all, we have more teachers now than in the past. In terms of percentages, however, it appears to fall well short."During the last four years of Democratic Gov. Jim Hunt (1997 2001), the legislature passed the Excellent Schools Act, which included a string of raises that averaged 6.5 to 7.5 percent in an effort to reach Timberland 6 Inch Premium Boot Black Womens the national average in teacher pay," Rob Christensen wrote in the Raleigh News Observer.Other increases cited by Christensen include two major ones under Republican governors. There was a 7.5 percent increase for all teachers while Jim Holshouser was in office during the 1970s and a 9.6 percent raise for teachers with three or more years' experience during the tenure of Jim Martin in the 1980s.Anyway, historical statistics mean little to today's teachers. They are concerned with what the new raises mean for them. For some the answer is, "Little or nothing." That's because the simplicity of a figure such as 7 percent hides a complexity of provisions.Raises range from 18.5 percent for teachers with five and six years of experience to 0.29 percent increases for those with 30 years' experience. That will help the state keep younger teachers but is hardly a morale booster for the older ones. Association of Educators.In fact, if it weren't for a couple of wrinkles, some teachers would be losing money. Pay is capped at $50,000, less than some teachers make now. However, their higher salaries will be grandfathered in, and they will get $1,000 per year bonuses.Beyond that, raises for advanced degrees are being phased out and longevity pay is being folded into the pay schedule. This last Timberland Classic Boots Sale

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means that part of the raises are actually Timberland Women's Earthkeepers Granby Tall Waterproof Boots

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´╗┐Teacher pay raise welcome

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money to which the teachers already were entitled and not new money.The major problem, as Christensen noted, is that the General Assembly destabilized state government with its tax changes. The increased money paid Timberland Earthkeepers Stormbuck Lite Chukka

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by those in lower income brackets does not compensate for the cuts received by the rich. "The tax cuts will make it difficult for North Carolina to sustain competitive teacher salaries beyond the election year," he wrote.

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