Mullins joins bipartisan effort to raise minimum educator salary
HARRISBURG, March 26 – State Rep. Kyle Mullins, D-Lackawanna, today joined state Sen. Judy Schwank, D-Berks, and state Rep. Tarah Toohil, R-Luzerne, to support a bicameral and bipartisan effort to raise the minimum educator salary in Pennsylvania, as proposed by Gov. Tom Wolf in his annual budget address.
“We face an alarming teacher shortage in Pennsylvania, and low wages are a major contributing factor,” Mullins said. “If we don’t attract and retain quality educators, we are jeopardizing critical and foundational experiences for our schoolchildren. We can’t risk that, and we can’t wait any longer to take action. The state must take action.”
The current minimum salary for educators is $18,500 and was set more than 30 years ago in 1988. The proposal would increase the minimum starting salary to $45,000 and would benefit 3,100 educators in 216 school districts, intermediate units and career and technical centers across the commonwealth.
“This is our chance to show just how much we value our educators,” Mullins said. “I am proud to join lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to make sure teachers are doing better than living paycheck to paycheck.”
Mullins said this initiative would be fully funded through the state budget and would not necessitate an increase in local property taxes. Wolf’s proposed state budget would provide an estimated $13.8 million in basic educational funding to cover the salary increases as well as pension, Social Security and Medicare costs.