Atlanta, June 12, 2022 – Democratic nominee for Governor, Stacey Abrams, introduced a new plan to better serve Georgia’s students by investing in the teachers, paraprofessionals and support staff who tirelessly serve the children of Georgia each day. Abrams’ plan would increase the state base salary for teachers from $39,092 to $50,000, and move Georgia from 21st in the nation for teacher salaries to the top 10.
“Georgia’s students and their families always come first. To meet this mission, we must fully fund public education in our state to ensure our children have a strong early start and the chance at a better future,” said Stacey Abrams. “Central to our children’s educational success is supporting the teachers, paraprofessionals and support staff who help us grow resilient children. As Governor, I will raise the state base salary from $39,092 to $50,000 and support living wages and advancement for our education support professionals. When our educators are highly valued and fairly compensated for their commitment to education, our children benefit. Building One Georgia requires that we prioritize and invest in every generation — and that begins with public education.”
Georgia educators face a range of challenges; however, chief among the concerns is pay. Low wages force teachers to drop out of the profession or leave the state, and fewer teachers are entering the profession due to the long-term lack of financial growth. Although we are the eighth largest state in the nation, this year our state ranked 21st for teacher salaries. Georgia ($39,092) lags behind neighboring states like Mississippi ($41,638) and Florida ($47,500) who are taking steps to raise base teacher pay to support and retain more educators.
Specifically, Abrams plan will:
– Raise minimum teacher pay: Increase the state base salary for teachers from $39,092 to $50,000.
– Raise teacher salaries overall: Increase teacher salaries from current average of $62,500 to an average of $73,500 in her first term.
– Make Georgia a leader in teacher pay: Move Georgia from 21st in the nation in teacher salaries to the top 10.
– Support living wages and advancement for education support professionals: Ensure a living wage for ESPs, as well as professional development that will aid them in advancing in the education workforce.