The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

February 19, 2014

Local teachers call salary increases 'step in right direction'


TARBORO — ‚Ä®Gov. Pat McCrory on Feb. 10 promised to raise pay for starting teachers in North Carolina from $30,800 a year to $35,000 a year over the next two years.

Currently, teachers with five years of experience or less make the base salary of $30,800, which ranks 47th in the nation for starting teaching salary.

The proposal is headed to the General Assembly for approval. The estimated cost of the salary increase is $200 million.

“I think it’s a step in the right direction to attract and retain new teachers,” said Angelica Rouson, a second-year math teacher at Tarboro High School.

Kathleen Gawsyzowski, a 12th grade English teacher at SouthWest Edgecombe High School with two years of experience in North Carolina Public Schools, shared similar thoughts.

“It’s an incentive for new teachers to stick with the profession,” she said.

Rouson shared her personal experience as a new teacher living on the base salary.

“It’s very difficult to live on your own as a beginning teacher,” Rouson said. “Being a beginning teacher, I even had to relocate from Rocky Mount to Tarboro because gas was so expensive.”

For the complete story, see today's print edition of The Daily Southerner.