The Governor’s Office of Economic Development offers us more fun with numbers with their new and improved Real Wage Calculator. This nifty little tool, touted in GOED’s 2014 Annual Report, tells you how far your salary will stretch in locales all across the country compared with your after-tax purchasing power here in South Dakota.
The National Education Association just released its latest assessment of national teacher salaries and other education statistics. (Yes, we’re still last.) It’s mash-up time!
NEA reports the following teacher salaries by state for the 2013–2014 school year:
Punch those salaries into GOED’s Real Wage Calculator, and how much purchasing power do teachers in non-metro South Dakota, North Dakota, and Minnesota have?
Let me spare you some screen shots and do a full regional comparison of the NEA’s posted average teaching salaries with the after-tax purchasing power GOED says those salaries would produce in each state’s rural areas and in each state’s largest metro:
|State||avg teacher salary||non-metro after-tax purchasing power||biggest metro after-tax purchasing power|
On straight salary, South Dakota teachers earn $11,888 less each year than the surrounding six-state average. On purchasing power averaged across all neighboring states, non-metro teachers give up $5,618 each year to teach in South Dakota; metro teachers give up $6,150. Multiply that out over 30 years in teaching, and a South Dakota teacher gives up a whole house.
File this post as Exhibit #1 in the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Teachers and Students docket on South Dakota’s teacher shortage.
Update 13:14 CDT: I have updated figures in the chart for Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Montana and revised the averages given in the penultimate paragraph.