Teachers rally for safer schools, smaller classes, higher pay

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CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46 WJZY) — Teachers will rally at the state capitol Wednesday, May 16 for safer schools, smaller class sizes, and higher pay. FOX 46 Charlotte will be there.

Senator Jeff Tarte from Cornelius said he will be meeting with teachers in Raleigh.

“I want the top teachers in every state to want to work in North Carolina and the greatest and the best to be here,” he said. 

Senator Tarte said he’s trying to make that happen with teacher raises and fast tracking top level pay for younger teachers.

RELATED: North Carolina school districts closing for teacher protest

“Teachers in the system can get to the same pay they did at year 30 now at year 15,” Tarte said. 

The starting teacher salary with a bachelor’s degree in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is $40,246.50. According to Senator Tarte, if that teacher stays with CMS for 15 years, the educator will reach the top tier pay at $60,046.70.

“The veteran teachers have been seeing virtually no increases. I absolutely agree with that. However, no increase is not exactly accurate. Last year, every single state employee received a thousand dollar pay raise,” he said. 

The veteran teacher FOX 46 heard from on Monday, Erlene Lyde, received a pay increase from $66,484.50 in 2015, $67,789.00 in 2016, to $68,180.30 in 2017, according to CMS.

RELATED: NC teachers ask for better salaries; prepare for May 16 education rally

However, new teachers are no longer paid for having a master’s degree or any education beyond a bachelor’s.

Senator Tarte explains, “Everybody who had a master’s or board certification had a pay bump. We did not take that away for any teacher who had that. They will continue to receive that for as long as they teach in North Carolina. What we did do is discontinue that for new teachers.”

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