The average U.S. public school teacher salary in 2017-18 was $60,477. Most states’ average teacher salaries fall well below that, but due to the upper range of figures, the average U.S. teacher salary is pushed up.
The states with the highest average teacher salaries in 2017-18 were New York ($84,227), California ($80,680) and Massachusetts ($80,357) while states with the lowest teacher salaries were Mississippi ($44,926), West Virginia ($45,642) and Oklahoma ($46,300), according to the NEA report.
Hawaii’s single-district public school system counts 179,000 students and roughly 13,000 instructional staff.
Cory Lum/Civil Beat
As this EdWeek post points out, these salaries can’t be considered in a vacuum due to the widely varying costs of living in each place. The expense of living in Hawaii, for instance, pushes its average teacher salary way down when adjusted for cost of living.
One area in which Hawaii edged ahead of the U.S. average is per-pupil expenditure: it spent $14,617 per pupil in 2017-18 compared with the U.S. average of $12,602. Hawaii was ranked 15th in the country in this regard.
New York and the District of Columbia had the highest per pupil expenditures at $23,894 and $21,001, respectively, with Idaho and Utah ranking the lowest, at a respective $6,809 and $7,187.
Sign up for our FREE morning newsletter and face each day more informed.
A note to our readers
While asking for your support is something we don’t like to do, the simple fact is that our reporters, our journalism, and our impact rely on it. Since lifting our paywall and becoming a nonprofit in mid-2016, our local newsroom has benefitted from a stream of charitable support from people who want our type of journalism to survive. People like you who understand that our work is essential to a better-informed community. If you value the work of our journalists, show us with your tax-deductible support.