This one chart explains the teacher shortage
Public school teachers have long made less money than other professionals, but last year the gap hit its widest level since 1960, according to a new analysis of federal data.
Zoom in: The immediate culprit is inflation, which eroded teachers' real pay considerably in 2022.
- The earnings of other college grads managed to just about keep pace with price increases, writes the report's author, economist Sylvia Allegretto.
- Public schools are less nimble when it comes to raising pay than the private sector.
Of note: Teachers typically receive better benefits than other workers (pensions!). In her analysis, Allegretto calculated that even considering the value of those benefits, teachers still earn about 17% less.
Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify the report was from the Economic Policy Institute and the Center for Economic and Policy Research.