NC teachers moving to Texas for higher pay

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Recruiters with the Houston Independent School District in Texas will be in Greensboro Thursday looking to hire Triad teachers and luring them with higher salaries.

The average North Carolina teacher starts out making around $30,000 a year. School districts in Texas are offering teachers jobs at around $50,000.

"I'm going to a state where my pay is going up by 33 percent immediately," said former Dudley High School history teacher Philip Baker, who is already packed and ready to move next week. "We began planning this move before we ever heard about these districts in Texas that were coming here to poach.”

Baker says he loved teaching at Dudley High School but says North Carolina's low teacher salary doesn't leave much promise.

"I applied to 4 different districts in the state of Texas and all asked why are you leaving your current job?" Baker said. "Very simply, I put down -- financial security."

Baker will begin in August working for a smaller school district southwest of Houston where the standard of living is about the same as the Piedmont Triad.

Parents of North Carolina students say the migration of teachers moving outside of the public schools is already underway.

"Friends that are teachers are thinking about leaving because of the pay," said Carla Meissner, of Greensboro. "My oldest daughter's best teacher has already left Guilford County Schools to work for a private school."

The move of many teachers is no surprise for residents who blame lawmakers for failing to raise teacher salaries.

"If North Carolina can't afford to pay their teachers and Texas can then I think it’s just a cut deal," said Jim Reese, of Greensboro. "Go where the money is."

Registration at the Houston Independent School District Job Fair starts at 8:00 a.m. at the Double Tree Hotel at 3030 High Point Road, Greensboro.


  • FaithC

    You can’t blame these teachers, they have to support their families. Texas will take the best of the best and leave NC with the dregs. NC better get it together and start to offer good money to draw some good teachers and get rid of the garbage that are in some of the schools.

  • yea!

    The last time the press and the teachers union made a big deal out of this,only 11 really went any where ! Just another tactic by the teachers union to try for more money for these unqualified jamoocks !

    • Amy Zagata

      What teachers union? How can you deny they numbers NC is 48th in the country in teacher pay how do you deny that? All teachers have a college degree…..

  • Babushka

    Looks like stupidity is alive and well in NC. There is no teachers union dummy and go ahead and let teachers leave and let the educational system in NC continue fall apart then watch more and more out of staters take the jobs that are here. Yea real smart

    • NobodyAtAll

      Oh yeah, live and well, born and raised..Good ole made in NC stupidity..And many out of staters don’t want NC jobs for the reason of this article..As well, the term “right to hire/right to fire” actually scares people away..There is no sense of stability or security with that term being used so proudly in NC..

      • Hobbes

        Texas is a Right to Work state. I don’t know if they have any different distinctions for teachers, but it is like NC in general. Texas also has no state income tax. This shows that you don’t necessarily need an oppressive income tax system to fund education. Until recently, NC was ruled by people who had no understanding of economics. They had a simplistic view of education funding in regard to taxes. Rick Perry 2016!

      • sinner 3

        BABUSHKA _No Body You two whiners can follow your teachers to Houston as !! Reads like you both could use further than 3rd grade level thinking !!

  • Doc Bennett

    2 more gone. Good. Now do a story about how many businesses left the state while the Dems were in office! Or about how many students graduated UNC without taking classes, or how many kids graduate NC High Schools without the basic tools to succeed. This is a non-issue the teacher’s UNION (there is one and it is called NCAE – North Carolina Association of Educators). They aren’t an offical union but give them any chance and they will become one. Just look how well the teachers unions has helped the kids in DC!
    PLEASE! Summers off, good pay for the work( good NOT GREAT, you should have gotten a degree in business and gotten a job with DEMANDS of producing!), retirement and health care and they still complain.

    • Jen Miller

      I am 5th grade teacher, work at least 9 to 10 hours a day – sometime with NO BREAK (I eat lunch while monitoring my students). You know how exhausting it is to work with and be responsible for 20+ children all day without a break and then have to stay after school and plan lessons? I also spend at 4+ hours EVERY Sunday grading papers and lesson planning for math, reading, grammar, science, writing, and social studies. We have a right to complain. We are being over-worked and not getting paid enough! I have 2 degrees which I am paying off, and can barely afford rent for a 1-bedroom apartment. Teachers deserve a decent salary to live comfortably. Everyone who works hard deserves that! Not only people who went to school for business…

      • WeBuiltThisCountry

        As a parent,I would like to say “thank you Ms.Miller.”I see how difficult your job is.You all should be getting payed a lot more. 46th in teacher pay is unacceptable. Moral Monday’s isn’t enough. Pat is determined to ruin or states education system.A man who has never had nor raised a child shouldn’t have any open on the school system!

      • Hobbes

        Jen, when you decided on this career, chose the major, took the classes… did someone not tell you about the earning potential and the amount of work? Were they hiding NC teacher salary figures from you? I’m assuming some agency didn’t assign your career or choose your major for you. One of the things which keeps wages low is a glut of Ed majors.

      • Hobbes

        WEBUILT… I suppose you were protesting all those years under Hunt/Easley/Perdue when we were 47th? Suddenly it’s McCrory’s problem?

        “Senate GOP proposes largest teacher pay raise in NC history”

      • Cheryl Kimber

        Jen, don’t feed the trolls. You are discussing reality for teachers and attempting to reason with people who are completely unreasonable and incapable of logic. Avoid these articles and continue to teach, look for a position outside of this state when you find the opportunity if it is a financial necessity. I understand you wanting to try to explain, but these people have zero interest in understanding our career. They enjoy telling themselves that we don’t check in advance prior to moving to another state. News flash….NC isn’t exactly the most reasonable in regards to cost of living. Our taxes are high with little to show for it. We have people in Raleigh arguing over a pay raise that they only brought into the picture to save their seats during the elections. Have a lovely time planning for your classroom with the remainder of your summer, as I am sure you have been planning and/ or working an extra job as I have.

      • Hobbes

        Cheryl, your post is devoid of hard facts. I realize that critical thinking skills have been replaced by how someone feels about any given issue, but let’s try and look at this intellectually.

        NC does have a high state income tax and you think it still doesn’t help teachers. TX has no state income tax, yet somehow they are able to pay more. Now, why would TX be coming to NC to get teachers? Obviously they have a shortage. In NC we have a glut of teachers. With the amount of certified teachers we have in NC, under normal economic conditions, salaries would be going down, yet they are kept artificially high for political considerations. Why is it that teachers under the proposed budget are slated to get higher raises than other state employees? Politics. Statistically and economically, teachers are overpaid (apart from possibly those in the hard sciences).

      • Hobbes

        Amy, the number of months you receive a paycheck is not relevant. We’re talking annual salary figures no matter how it is paid. The fact that they pay it over ten months instead of twelve is meaningless. It is still and annual salary for ten months work.

        Let me put it this way: Tammy makes $35,000 a year teaching in Elm City. She is paid monthly for ten months. Bob makes $35,000 a year teaching in Mount Pilot. He is paid monthly for twelve months. Which teacher makes the higher annual salary? Capisce?

    • Doc Bennett

      You have changed my mind with your witty retort and your thought provoking points.
      I stand corrected and now wish to pay teachers whatever they ask!

  • Mark

    Teachers deserve a lot of thanks in my opinion. But, if one wants to become a teacher, one should research the profession, find out what they can expect to be paid, and decide if it will provide the kind of lifestyle they wish to have. If not, then they should look into another type of degree, or be willing to move to an area that pays teachers more. Nobody deserves anything. That concept is a result of the entitlement mentality that is becoming more and more a part of our society.

    • Amy Zagata

      But what do you do when you do the research accept it then the state freezes the teacher pay steps (NOT RAISES) as an 9th year teacher that started at $30,430 a year I have only gotten a 1% raise to $30,734 a year. When On the pay scale when I came into teaching that they still have I should be making $38,680. So despite the research it is the state causing this problem.

  • dobydog1

    were these teachers smart enough to check the summer weather temps in Houston? were these teachers smart enough to check the cost of living in Houston? were these teachers smart enough to check the crime rate in Houston? salary is not the only the thing to check before moving to a new place. those not smart enough to check out the city stats could be in for a very big and unpleasant shock.

  • Mark

    Amy, I sympathize with you. Unfortunately, government is never to be trusted. They are too busy giving your money away to people who don’t deserve it, in order to garner more votes for themselves in the fall. There are, however, a lot of companies that are implementing wage freezes these days. I know people who have had the same salary for years and their workload has increased due to layoffs.

  • Cheryl Kimber

    Hobbes– you asked if someone did not tell Jen how much she would be earning. While completing my degree at ECU, I received the following pay scale in reference to my pay:
    According to the scale I agreed to, I should be making $4000 more per year than I am. You see, our frustration isn’t so much that we assumed we would be millionaires. It is a flat out lie by the state that we are fighting against. Educate yourself before assuming you know everything.

  • Babushka

    Wow thanks for supporting my post on stupidity I do appreciate it. Funny how you guys can be tricked by some guy who puts on a carhart coat to get you to vote for him. What’s next a jacked up truck.

  • Mr. D.

    I researched the profession. I signed a contract that promised a certain amount of pay for work performed. I work 50-60 hours a week. I have received stellar evaluations at two different NC schools. My students’ standardized test scores on multiple state and national tests are superb and show consistent growth. Neither the Democrat’s steps nor the Republican’s merit-pay have honored the contract I signed when I came to NC. I came to NC in 2006 to work at a difficult school and received a 2000$ signing bonus for two years, then our pay froze. On my federal tax return, I have only earned 500 dollars more than I did in 2006. In the last 7-8 years, taxes, groceries, insurance, gas, new baby, etc. have cost me so much that I can no longer afford to work this job and raise a family in this state.

    I have worked since I was 13 years-old. I ran away from home at 16. Still, I made straight A’s in high school and after, achieved two degrees, graduating in the top five of my class. Neither of my parents graduated high school. My father was in jail when I was born. I never whine or complain about it. I just work to better myself. I care not for either party because they could care less about me. I was taught to work hard and stay honest, and I would, at the very least, be able to provide for my family and our future. I have earned a raise.

    Some of you guys are completely inconsiderate to those of us who do our jobs and can prove it with data, examples, and hard-work. Some of you are “haters.” I am not blaming anyone. I will do what I must to be the best I can for my family even if that means costing my students an award-winning teacher. I’m not going to Texas, but I’m not staying in the classroom. My two most recent job offers provide a minimum of a 10,000$ increase for LESS WORK.

    Also, a couple of distortions need to be clarified.

    One: There is no true tenure in NC for teachers. Teachers with career status can be fired for many legitimate reasons. Those who just can’t do the job are forced out. It’s just like anywhere else. Career status only allows our dismissal to be reviewed. In 20 years, I have never known a bad teacher that couldn’t be removed from a building. Perhaps you know more than I.

    Two: There is not a true teacher’s union in NC, a right to work state (created by Dems as I recall). If there was, y’all would definitely know the difference between a real union and the NCEA. Yes, they act as a lobbying group. What the heck is wrong with that? I am not a member because like the politicians, they will do nothing for me, really.

    Anyway, haters– I’m a liberal who owns guns and hates big government, and mostly, it’s Republican policies that have made me feel the need to arm myself and to protect what’s mine. Why am I even bothering to mention this since nothing I say will change your mind?

    I hope the state or national government is also destroying your ability to provide for your family despite your hard work. Then, I could understand– not approve of, but understand your unrelenting malice toward teachers.

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