Compared to surrounding counties, first year teachers in Frederick County, Md. have the lowest paid salary, and that’s raising some concerns among educators.
“Our teachers lag behind even where are own salary scales should be, which makes it very uncompetitive. Our lowest paid teachers, our first year teachers, are the lowest in the state,”said Missy Dirk, president of Frederick County Teachers Association.
When looking at surrounding counties, teachers in their first year earn roughly $1,000 a year in Garrett County and roughly $5,000 more in Montgomery County.
“We’re losing teachers who have 10, 15, 20 years of experience when they can go to neighboring districts and make 17, 18, and even 20 thousand dollars more,” Dirk said.
Dirk said part of the reason why teachers in Frederick County make the lowest is because of a lack of funding.
“We’ve struggled because we’ve had a flat funding maintenance of effort for a consecutive of years, which means it’s just been challenging to pay the bills and dedicate additional money to teacher salaries,” said Mike Markoe, deputy superintendent, Frederick County Board of Education.
Markoe said that the school board is currently working on a plan to increase teacher salaries to make them more competitive with surrounding counties.