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Legislature again mulling teacher pay increases

JACKSON (AP) — Mississippi legislators are once again mulling pay increases for the state’s teachers.

Senate Bill 2001, which unanimously passed the Senate Education Committee on Wednesday, would give certified teachers with three or more years of experience a $1,000 pay increase.

Teachers with two years of experience and less would get a $1,110 bump, bringing them to a starting salary of $37,000 a year. Assistant teachers would receive a $1,000 pay increase.

The bill is similar to legislation proposed last year that was stalled after the coronavirus pandemic started and caused uncertainty about state spending.

The bill must now pass the Appropriations Committee before going to the floor of the full Senate for a vote.

Mississippi has had some of the lowest teacher salaries in the nation for generations. According to the most recent figures available from the Southern Regional Education Board, the average teacher salary in the U.S. for 2018-19 was $62,304. For Mississippi, the average was $45,105.

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