DENVER (KDVR) — A rural school district wants $40,000 a year for new teachers in rural districts, but not all rural districts are created equal.
The Campo school district is trying to gather sponsors for a bill that would bump its base pay for rural teachers. Schools have salary schedules that pay more as teachers gain years of teaching experience or have more education.
In the Campo school district – one of the state’s 200 districts with the lowest average pay – this would increase base teacher pay by $12,500. Each of the other lowest-paying rural districts would see their base pay increase $6,000-$10,000
Rural doesn’t necessarily mean low-paying, however.
Most of the state, in fact, is rural. Colorado Department of Education records list about 75% of the state’s school districts as either small rural or rural.
The base pay difference between all those rural districts ranges widely.
Some of the top-paying rural districts already have base pay rates well above the cap proposed by the Campo district.
The better the real estate, the higher teacher salaries will be. High Rockies resort communities are still considered rural, but they have base pay 10-15% higher.
Aspen 1 – which has the highest average salary of all rural school districts – has a $43,000 base pay.