Missouri teachers have made incremental salary gains since last school year, but educator pay continues to trail the national average.
The average Missouri teacher is making $49,760 for the 2017-18 school year, according to a Missouri State Teacher Association report on educator pay. That’s about $700 more than last year but still well below the national average for a classroom teacher, which is $58,950.
“You do have to dig a little deeper into the numbers to find a bright spot,” says Aurora Meyer, MSTA spokeswoman. “Overall, Missouri rose to 40th nationwide for classroom salary. That’s up three spots from last year.”
The ranking is based on data from the National Education Association and the National Center for Education Statistics.
Meyer says just four districts, all in rural Missouri, are paying the state minimum, which is $25,000 for a classroom teacher with a bachelor’s degree. In the Kansas City metro, the minimum starting salary for a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree is $33,450 in the Center School District. First-year teachers in the Lee’s Summit School District make the most in the metro, with a minimum salary of $39,000.
Meyer says MSTA also collects data on benefits so students graduating from schools of education can make an apples to apples comparison of job offers.
Districts consider a variety of factors when calculating teacher pay, including the teacher’s level of education and years of service. Teachers who coach sports or oversee clubs typically receive stipends to compensate them for those activities. MSTA factored in extra duty pay when calculating the statewide average salary.
You can use the sortable table below to check out salary information for your district. The “bachelor’s minimum” column represents the base pay for a new teacher with a bachelor’s degree with no additional credit hours of continuing education. The schedule maximum is the highest “step” on the salary schedule and represents the most a teacher with advanced degrees and continuing education.
Elle Moxley covers education for KCUR. You can reach her on Twitter @ellemoxley.