This past week, the Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs heard testimony on several bills. The Maine State Chamber delivered testimony in support of LD 1188, An Act To Include Librarians and Career and Technical Education Teachers in the Minimum $40,000 Salary Initiative. The Maine State Chamber supports this bill because it stands behind legislation that can assist in closing our state’s workforce gaps. This bill will help close workforce gaps in the specific area of trade and technical occupations. LD 1188 capitalizes on the positive correlation between teacher salaries and student performance
There are a couple of forces that result in better student performance when salaries increase, including:
1 Increase the supply of teachers. Statistically, the more employee choices schools have, the better choices they can make.
2 Quality teachers remain in the profession longer. Reports have shown that individuals who graduate at the top of their class with a teaching degree tend to leverage their abilities for a more lucrative career.
3 Less reliance on a second job. Teachers are 30% more likely than other professionals to have a second job. While some of this can be contributed to their unique schedule, many teachers with second jobs credit the decision with financial hardship. By eliminating the need for a second job, teachers will be more able to focus on their teaching.
The Maine State Chamber believes that the decision to raise teacher pay was appropriate. It supports this bill because it believes that all students should be able to share in the positive results that increased pay brings. As a state, we are uniquely reliant on trades. This bill will inspire more students to pursue and education in career and technical occupations as well as increase their education quality, making them more prepared for successful careers.
Right from the Start Coalition…
The RFTS Coalition met and is excited about two bills that are in the works. Senate President Jackson and House Speaker Fecteau both have bills that will help bolster the state’s childcare. One bill focuses on access and pathways for families, while the other focuses on quality and increasing capacity. More details will be available as the bills develop.
If you would like more information about the issues discussed in this article, please contact Simon West by calling (207) 623-4568, ext. 117, firstname.lastname@example.org.