One of the sadder economic trends that has gripped the US is the plight of teachers.
Unlike many jobs, teachers usually have to pay for their classroom supplies, which isn’t always easy on the standard teacher’s salary.
Of all of the things that can be used to gauge a region’s economic health, the lifestyle afforded to public school teachers is an important metric. According to the US Department of Labor, there are 4.2 million preschool, primary, secondary, and special education teachers in the US. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for these kinds of teachers ranges from $53,000 to $60,000. While there have been many sad stories on the plight of poorly paid teachers, the wider trend is that teachers are doing alright in the US. Because of teachers’ place in society as both the educators of the next generation and the most trusted professionals in American society, it’s little surprise that teachers’ pay has become such a controversial issue.
When it comes to the lifestyle that most American teachers can afford, most teachers working in metropolitan areas are faring alright financially. According to a study by LendingTree, teachers in 46 of the 50 largest metros in the US can afford to buy a median-priced home in their city. This figure assumes that a teacher can afford to spend 28% of their salary on housing. By city, teachers in Buffalo, Pittsburgh, and Detroit will usually have the easiest time affording a house. In completely unsurprising news, teachers in metropolitan areas such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Jose are having the most trouble affording a house.
Before we declare that the news is all good for American teachers, you also have to consider the situation of the average teacher. Teachers are typically saddled with more student loan debt than the average American.