Are Teachers Overpaid?
Teacher pay has long been blamed for the diminishing quality of education in the United States. Education activists from former first lady Laura Bush to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan argue that salaries for teachers should be increased both to properly compensate teachers for their difficult occupation and to lure more competent young people into the profession. However, a recent report conducted by scholars at the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute sought to debunk that claim, suggesting not only that public school teachers are not underpaid, they may in fact be overpaid. If such a claim is true, it has implications for schools across the country, as most state and local budgets are particularly tight, and education reformers may see that other areas of public schools are what need improvement. However, teacher unions and other education experts immediately rejected the report, holding to the conventional wisdom that paying teachers more is key to education reform. Here is the Debate Club’s take on whether teachers are overpaid: