How Would a 3% Cut in Pay Affect the Nationwide Salary Ranking of Rhode Island Teachers?
To help cities and towns close budget gaps which might crop up in part by a proposed reduction in state aid, Governor Carcieri has suggested that municipalities around Rhode Island negotiate a 3% reduction in teacher salaries.
Carcieri said he wants teachers to make the same sacrifice state workers are making. He wants every district to reopen teacher contracts and get the unions to agree to salary reductions rather than increase property taxes, but he also recognizes it is up to municipalities to figure out how they will absorb the cuts.
“I’m a big supporter of education,” Carcieri said. “But all we’re saying is, if people give a little bit this year and next year, we’ll hopefully get through this.”
What would be the impact on teacher salary ranking?
Currently, at $58,491, the average salary for a Rhode Island teacher ranks tenth highest. Subtract 3% and the result is $56,736. At that point, the average salary would slip past the average salary for Michigan teachers at $57,327 and Pennsylvania at $56,906, which would move up to tenth and eleventh highest respectively.
A 3% hair cut, then, would move the average Rhode Island teacher salary down from tenth to twelfth highest nationwide. That would seem to be within the parameter of “a little bit”.