WDAY.com

WDAZ: Your Home Team

Published March 06, 2013, 05:38 PM

Higher Wages Could be Coming to ND Teachers

The "Make the Average the Law" campaign might be bringing higher salaries to North Dakota teachers. It's kicking off today by the North Dakota Education Association. The goal is to raise the minimum starting salary for teachers to $32,000.

The "Make the Average the Law" campaign might be bringing higher salaries to North Dakota teachers. It's kicking off today by the North Dakota Education Association. The goal is to raise the minimum starting salary for teachers to $32,000.

Supporters say it's time for a change. The current minimum teachers salary, $22,500, was set by state legislators ten years ago.

The Make the Average the Law campaign seeks to even out the playing field when it comes to teacher salaries. Brad Srur, Grand Forks Education Association: "It's getting everyone at least up to the average."

A recent survey shows the majority of North Dakotans would support raising the minimum to $36,000, but campaign leaders say $32,000 is a reasonable compromise. Brad: "North Dakota I think at this point has changed a lot in the last 10 years, and the association feels it can be done now."

The measure is mostly aimed at helping rural areas. Brad: "I think it will help our recruitment of teachers because I know there are places in North Dakota where they struggle to get teachers."

Thomas Wrenn, Grand Forks Resident: "I think the east can stand on its own and the west really needs help desperately."

Salaries for Grand Forks teachers start at more than $36,000.

Brad: "I think it depends on your tax base, your school district, the size of your school district. And the Grand Forks community really values it's teachers and education."

If passed, supporters say it will benefit the whole state.

Brad: "People will be able to come to the state and actually teach and be able to maybe afford something."

North Dakota currently has a budget surplus of more than 1.6 billion dollars.

Tags: