Saturday night owls: Teacher pay relative to that of other college graduates has collapsed

Night Owls, a themed open thread, appears at Daily Kos seven days a week

The liberal Economic Policy Institute has published 13 charts that it says show us where our economic priorities ought to be in 2020. The one above is No. 11. Here’s the text EPI wrote to go with it:

School teacher strikes made the news over and over again in 2019, highlighting the profound disinvestment in the nation’s public schools that has been taking place over recent decades. A growing teacher pay penalty is a critical component of that, as seen in this chart.

The teacher pay penalty has not been a fact of U.S. life forever—as recently as the mid-1990s, teacher pay was reasonably competitive. But in the past two decades or more, the relative pay of teachers has collapsed. By 2018, the teacher pay penalty had grown to more than 20%. While teachers do, on average, receive more valuable benefits than their professional peers, these better benefits do not make up for the huge gap in cash compensation. Given the vast reams of research showing the importance of teacher quality to student outcomes, this disinvestment in the pay of teachers is extraordinarily destructive to the quality of the nation’s public education system.

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At Daily Kos on this date in 2012—Compare your income and tax rate to Mitt Romney’s:

Slate has produced a Romney income calculator that lets us find out how many hours or days it took Mitt Romney to match our incomes in 2010, and it is good fun to plug in different numbers to get multiple perspectives on just how ridiculously rich Romney is.

For instance, in 2010 it took Mitt Romney 10 hours and 40 minutes to earn the median individual income of $26,400. It took him 16 hours and nine minutes to earn the mean income of $39,959. It took him three days, eight hours, and 53 minutes to earn the $200,000 that by some measures puts you in the top 1 percent; or five days, 19 hours, and seven minutes to earn the $344,000 that puts you in the top 1 percent by another measure.

And don’t forget, however much more money Romney makes than you, he also quite likely pays a lower tax rate. So make your next stop the DNC’s Romney tax calculator, to compare your tax rate to Romney’s and find out how different your taxes would be if you paid at the rate he does. (Not included in the calculation is the cost of all the accountants and lawyers he pays to help him avoid paying taxes.)

So, how long does it take Mitt Romney to make your income, and how much would you save on taxes if like him you only paid 13.9 percent?

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