As school districts across Texas struggle to retain teachers and other key personnel, a TASB survey shows that most pay groups received a pay increase from their district, and the median starting teacher salary increased nearly 6%.
TASB HR Services’ statewide 2021–22 District Personnel Survey results offer in-depth salary and other compensation information that school districts can use as they work on their next budgets.
Of 1,020 districts, 517 participated in the survey, representing 51% of districts in Texas. For districts with 3,000 or more students, participation was 84%. Key findings for teacher compensation include:
- Median starting salary for a new teacher is $45,800, up 5.9% from last year. The highest reported entry salary is $62,500.
- Median teacher average salary is $53,500, up 2.9% from 2020–21.
- The majority of respondents, 88%, pay shortage stipends to teachers in at least one identified shortage area.
Regarding overall pay increases for school personnel, additional survey findings include:
- Median pay increase across all pay groups (teacher, administrative professional, clerical paraprofessional, and auxiliary) is 2.3%.
- Of responding districts, 12% did not give a pay increase for the 2021–22 school year, while 3% reported a one-time payment instead.
The TASB survey gathers comprehensive data that districts can use to compare themselves to local peers for teacher pay at benchmark years, as well as compare about 140 other jobs common to school districts.
“The data allow districts to plan for next year’s increases and budget by giving them a firm grasp on the local market as it currently stands,” said Janelle Guillory, assistant director for TASB HR Services. “The information from this survey helps them develop a plan for pay increases and strategic adjustments that will help them recruit, retain, and reward staff.”
The pandemic has had a significant impact on teachers and staff in general. Across the country and in Texas, teacher burnout has prompted many to leave the profession entirely.
“There are fewer people to fill vacancies, which drives up competition for salaries,” said Guillory.
There has long been competition among districts to attract the best teachers and other personnel, but Guillory said the pandemic has heightened the effort to stay ahead of neighboring districts. In addition, many districts are having to be competitive with the entry pay rates that local companies offer for food service, custodial, maintenance, and bus drivers.
Importance of the salary survey
TASB conducts the annual survey to provide timely, accurate information to its HR Services members, and it also uses the information in its own compensation consulting projects.
“Just as a district might use it for themselves, we use it for market comparisons and to back up recommendations we make to our client districts,” said Guillory.
“If we didn’t conduct this survey each year, then Texas school districts would not have access to this kind of timely, reliable data to use for determining their salary schedules and compensation plans,” said Guillory.
Related: See more highlights from this year’s salary surveys.
Editor's note: This article appeared in the March 2022 issue of Texas Lone Star magazine