Is master's pay going away with reforms in your area?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by waterfall, Jun 25, 2013.

  1. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    How many schools still have a traditional step scale where a person with a master's degree is paid much more? In the district I'm going too, if I had a master's degree I would have gotten 5,000 more this year! I combed through the negotiated agreement and found that lateral steps are always given (even if there is a pay freeze for experience steps).

    I'd been looking at programs anyway and that kind of money is obviously a big motivator. The cheapest programs I'm finding would be about 15,000 total. I'm sure with fees and books that will be more like 20,000. My concern is that with all of the "reforms" this kind of extra pay will be going away. My first district was very reform minded and they loved to tout the research that teachers with master's degrees aren't more effective. They gave teachers with advanced degrees a small stipend per year that kept shrinking- I believe it was less than 2,000 when I left. Most of the districts in the city still have the step scales where by the time you get to year 15 or so, someone with a MA is literally making 15,000-20,000 more than someone with just a BA. Merit pay is starting here, but so far most districts are rolling it out as a "bonus" (how in the world they're going to afford that, I don't know).

    Do you think those kind of salary scales will stick around? I do like taking classes and my program would give me an additional certification, but if I'm never going to make the money back it's obviously very financially unsound. Part of me also thinks I should hurry up and get as much done this year as possible, since presumably they can't take away a salary bump in the future that they've already given you.
     
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  3. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    I worry a about this too. We have strong unions in NJ, but when I look at what's happening in the rest of the world, I find it pretty scary. I'm thinking hard about finishing my Master's starting in the spring (or possibly even the fall), but the idea that it might have no value in the not too distant future is definitely cause for concern.
     
  4. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    In NC master's and National Boards no longer increase your salary. Way to promote mediocrity, NC.
     
  5. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    15-20 thousand extra for a Masters??? I make a little under 3 thousand extra each year for my Masters. While the extra pay is great, I got a lot of useful information from my Masters program, so I am glad I did it.
     
  6. AHS_Fan

    AHS_Fan Rookie

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    I live and teach in NC, and it went away just this year, unfortunately. I had always planned to get a master's degree or get my National Boards, but with this recent change I no longer plan to do that.

    I absolutely love learning and desire to better myself as an educator, but I realistically cannot undergo the expense of attaining an advanced degree if I'm not going to reap any kind of financial benefit.

    It's not that I only want a master's degree for the money...it's just that I cannot afford to get an advanced degree under these conditions. :(
     
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Unfortunately, I do see many states and districts moving towards no longer compensating teachers for advanced degrees. If that were to happen in my district, I am afraid that I would have to resign and look for a position in a different field. I simply couldn't financially support my family on the base teacher salary in my district.
     
  8. FarFromHome

    FarFromHome Connoisseur

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    You sometimes have to be careful what your degree is in. My Master's is in Educational Leadership and I don't get paid extra because its not in teaching.
     
  9. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    In my district, the difference in pay is only $2000 per year. I'm seriously considering obtaining my Master's, not because of the paltry pay difference, but out of fear that soon, only teachers with Masters degrees will be considered hireable (plus a couple of positions in which I am interested require one).

    When I was hired, the district reimbursed employees for tuition & books. That went away during my first year.
     
  10. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

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    Yeah, so apparently education is bad for education.

    Meanwhile, the various reformy educrats and Hedgeucators send their kids to elite schools like Harpeth Hall, Sidwell Friends, Chicago Lab, etc. These schools boast of their advanced-credentialed faculty, rich curricula, small class sizes, and basically all the things that are the opposite of the reformy folderol they push.
     
  11. Myrisophilist

    Myrisophilist Habitué

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    *scratches head* Yeah, we don't want any of those teacher-leaders running around...
     
  12. geoteacher

    geoteacher Habitué

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    Districts are moving to a salary schedule with fewer tiers. The tiers are partially tied to education, but the other part is tied to performance goals. We are going through that process in my district.
     
  13. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    This isn't where I work, but this is very similar to other scales in the area: http://www.adams12.org/files/hr/Sept2012-Jun2013.pdf

    By year 15 there is a 16k difference between BA and MA pay and by year 20 there is a 20k difference.

    Under those circumstances, it would be absurd to NOT get the masters degree, but I'm afraid I'll finally go get it and all of this will go away!

    That scares me that they completely took it away in NC- I thought they would have to at least pay a small stipend like my first district did. We are "right to work" here in CO. Denver area unions are very strong (high voluntary participation), but they don't truly have many rights beyond what the district will give them in good faith. Douglas county, which was hotly discussed here awhile ago, basically has no union anymore because their school board essentially decided they wouldn't recognize them.
     
  14. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I've heard that...I'm looking into a reading specialization which I assume is okay because its so related, but I would definitely check with HR first.
     
  15. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Do you think that they would take what you already make away and make your pay smaller? Is that even legal? I was thinking that I could least move up a lot if they kept the current scales for a few years. I assumed they couldn't take away what's already your base salary. In my first district they just did away with the scale all together and people could only earn raises through merit pay, but if you were already getting the higher salary for an advanced degree that amount was still your base pay. They didn't lower anyone's salary from what they were already given.
     
  16. OhThePlaces

    OhThePlaces Cohort

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    When I started in my distinct 6 years ago, you would get paid 1k more each year with a Master's degree. Now you get nothing. :mad:
     
  17. Cicero

    Cicero Companion

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    I am a NC teacher and I just received my M level license in April. I saw an increase in my pay after filing for it. That's kind of odd. Unless you mean that next year this will be happening... Although my district's posted pay scale has not been adjusted for the next year to show this. It still has a separate one for master's level and NBPTS.
     
  18. Lobo

    Lobo Rookie

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    We have three levels:

    Level 1: base salary (bachelor's degree) $30,000
    Level 2: 3 years experience, passed a state dossier $40,000
    Level 3: 6 years experience, Master's degree, passed a second state dossier $50,000

    They were supposed to vote in the state legislature to do away with the levels and base pay on student test scores. Luckily they tabled the issue in the last session. I'm currently working on my Master's and will graduate in December. I'm hoping if they do vote next year, I'll be grandfathered in.
     
  19. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    I'm starting my Reading Specialist degree in the Fall. It will be my second master's. For now, we are paid more for extra degrees. I really just want it for the certification/job security. Above all, I'm genuinely interested in the topic.
     
  20. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Yeah, I'd say they definitely want you to get a Masters! :lol: That is an absurd difference at the higher steps!

    I have a MS. I am paid $500 a year for it. :rolleyes: It also puts me in a higher column based on units. At my school, you don't reach maximum earning potential until you have BA+90, keeping in mind that nearly all CA teachers have BA+30 because the credential program is typically 30 units past a BA.

    There are other districts that pay MUCH more - bigger stipends, higher column increases, etc.
     
  21. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    The schools in my area still do. I've gotten nice 1st yr salaries at a couple of districts I've worked at for having my MA.


    Don't know...haven't heard about them going away any time soon. I'll just enjoy it while it lasts.
     
  22. AHS_Fan

    AHS_Fan Rookie

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    It is my understanding that starting in the 2014-2015 school year there will not be a pay bump for teachers who get an advanced degree. It is also my understanding that teachers may be "grandfathered" in if they earned an advanced degree prior to the 2014-2015 school year.

    So, it looks like you would still get the pay increase, but future teachers would not.

    (Again, this all could change. The budget has not even passed yet and the bill ending the pay bump is tied to the budget for next year.) :dunno:
     
  23. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Ours is only $1,000 more too-we are not encouraged in any way to pursue a higher degree, which I think is sad. There used to be programs where they would pay for the classes if you worked in a Title 1 school so long, etc., not anymore. But, they'll pay you $5,000 in merit pay if you teach a testing grade and raise test scores enough! Priorities. :rolleyes:

    I would love to pursue one-also just for the learning experience, but really just can't afford it right now.
     
  24. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Ugh, I really wish teachers were paid a more decent salary! I know there are budget issues, but the children are the future of our country. In addition, I think there are lots of better places we could cut. *sigh rant over* :haha:
     
  25. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    That's all it is in my district also.
     

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