Idaho’s average K-12 teacher salary has hit an all-time high.
The number climbed to $53,100 in 2021-22, state data show, wiping out last year’s temporary drop and resuming a years-long upward trend.
The average peaked at 51,691 in 2019-20, but fell by almost $900 last school year after the pandemic prompted a temporary statewide salary freeze.
Still, the number climbed steadily by 12.5% from 2014-15 to 2019-20, thanks to the five-year, $250 million career ladder salary law.
Despite last school year’s freeze, the 2021-22 K-12 school budget fully funded another year of raises under continuation of the career ladder after Gov. Brad Little sought and received $44.9 million in new funding from the Legislature.
This year, Little is seeking roughly $300 million in new money for K-12, including a 10% boost in state dollars available for more teacher pay hikes and a $1,000 bonus for every teacher.
A range of other factors — including turnover among veteran teachers, size of districts and charter schools and the availability of local funds — also impact annual averages at the state and local levels.
Here’s a closer look at this year’s numbers.
At least 158 of 180 districts and charters saw average increases from last school year, state numbers show.
The increases vary widely, from a $2 increase in the Marsh Valley district to a $11,420 increase at iSucceed Virtual Charter, which topped this year’s statewide list with an average annual salary of $74,989.
This year’s Top 10 included seven charters and three districts:
- iSucceed Virtual Charter (Boise): $74,989.
- Blaine County School District: $74,546.
- Upper Carmen Public Charter: $71,572.
- Kootenai Bridge Academy (Coeur d’Alene): $70,429.
- Legacy Charter School (Nampa): $65,000.
- Boise School District: $64,630.
- Vision Charter School (Caldwell): $64,355.
- Genesee School District: $64,325.
- Liberty Charter (Nampa): $63,322.
- Victory Charter(Nampa): $61,905.
Some notable declines
Despite widespread increases, average teacher salaries dropped from last year in at least 21 districts and charters. The remote Prairie district saw no change, with salaries stagnate at $44,375.
Declines also occurred on a spectrum. Fern-Waters Public Charter, located in Salmon, posted the largest drop, at $19,908. Nampa-Based Legacy Charter school saw a $200 decline.
It’s no surprise that some of the largest fluctuations occurred at small, rural charters, as one staff retirement or job change can heavily impact local averages.
Other notable drops from across the state:
- Meridian-based Doral Academy posted a $16,934 decline.
- Mountain Home’s Richard McKenna Charter saw a $2,681 drop.
- The Teton School District’s single-year decline: $606.
Idaho Education News data analyst Randy Schrader contributed to this story.