Survey says: Teachers underpaid, overworked

education protest flag in front of Arizona capitol
A #RedforEd flag is waved during protest at the Arizona State Capitol complex in Phoenix. Low teacher wages have become a national talking point. "Red for Ed flag" by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
education protest flag in front of Arizona capitol
A #RedforEd flag is waved during protest at the Arizona State Capitol complex in Phoenix. Low teacher wages have become a national talking point. “Red for Ed flag” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

More than half the teachers who participated in a Nevada State Education Association survey are considering leaving education.

Over an eight-month period, more than 3,000 educators were asked about income levels, working a second job and salary incentives.

“The survey results are a brutal reminder that teaching is a challenging profession where more than 50 percent are considering leaving their jobs due to factors beyond their control,” said Ruben Murillo, the president of the organization, in a statement.

About 56 percent of those who responded to the survey have a master’s degree, and nearly 40 percent have been in the profession 10 to 20 years — another 30 percent have worked in education more than 20 years. The majority make less than $60,000, with about 24 percent earning between $50,000 and $60,000 and 23 percent making between $40,000 and $50,000.

Almost three quarters who responded said they don’t have enough time to prepare during the school day  — when it comes to using their own time to prep outside the classroom, about 35 percent spend between five and 10 hours, 22 percent spend between 10 and 15 hours and 21 percent spend more than 15 hours.

And some still have to rely on additional employment.

More than a third work a second job during the school year. About 80 percent feel the quality of their work would improve if they didn’t have a second job and nearly 90 percent would quit that job if they were paid adequately.

“If Nevada is serious about recruiting and retaining quality educators, the concerns expressed in this survey need to be addressed,” Murillo Jr. said.

Michael Lyle
Michael Lyle (MJ to some) has been a journalist in Las Vegas for eight years.  He started his career at View Neighborhood News, the community edition of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. During his seven years with the R-J, he won several first place awards from the Nevada Press Association and was named its 2011 Journalist of Merit. He left the paper in 2017 and spent a year as a freelance journalist accumulating bylines anywhere from The Washington Post to Desert Companion. While he covers a range of topics from homelessness to the criminal justice system, he gravitates toward stories about race relations and LGBTQ issues. Born and mostly raised in Las Vegas, Lyle graduated from UNLV with a degree in Journalism and Media Studies. He is currently working on his master's in Communications through an online program at Syracuse University. In his spare time, Lyle cooks through Ina Garten recipes in hopes of one day becoming the successor to the Barefoot Contessa throne. When he isn’t cooking (or eating), he also enjoys reading, running and re-watching episodes of “Parks and Recreation.” He is also in the process of learning kickboxing.

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