Beginning teachers would earn at least a $50,000 salary – starting next school year – under a bill filed this week in Tallahassee.
Sen. Darren Soto (D-Orlando) filed the bill, SB 280, which cites a need for the state to attract and retain teachers. It seeks to increase their pay without affecting other personnel and programs.
Lawmakers would have to put enough money into education to guarantee the minimum starting salary for teachers and to ensure that districts have enough money to maintain other services. The base salary would be adjusted each year for inflation.
The bill doesn’t explain how lawmakers should come up with the money to boost all of those salaries. It makes no mention of teacher evaluations – which impact salaries. It also doesn’t say whether experienced teachers would get a pay increase since beginners would be bumped up considerably.
While the starting pay varies among districts, the state Department of Education says the average salary among all Florida teachers for the 2013-2014 school year was $47,780.
The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics says the average salary for all Florida workers is just over $41,000.