Why Is Illinois’sTop Teacher Salary $108,000 More Than Kentucky’s?

And $95,000 more than WI and $92,000 more than IA and $83,000 more than MO?

Or to put it another way why is IL top teacher salary more than twice as much as Kentucky’s ($203,000 vs. $195,000)?

The answer the above questions is simple: because the National Education Association (NEA) and it’s spawn, the Illinois Education Association (IEA) completely control the political process in Springfield and in every local school district.

 

What other reason could there be?

Are IL teachers twice as good as KY teachers? I don’t think so.

 

Are IL teachers twice as smart as KY teachers? I don’t think so.

 

Are IL teachers twice as deserving as KY teachers? I don’t think so.

 

Are Illinois test scores twice as good as KY? No they are actually lower.

 

As you can see from the following table Illinois test scores are generally lower than the adjacent states with much lower teacher salaries confirming what everyone already knows: teacher salaries have nothing to do with student achievement.

 

Notice how IL scores last in 4 out of the 7 categories and is 4th in two others. Only in “8th Grade Writing” does it outscore all of its neighbors.

 

2011 National Assessment of Education Progress      
SOURCE:NationalCenterfor Education Statistics        
 

 

 

Illinois

KY

IA

WI

MO

IL Place

 

Scale Score, Grade 4 Math

 

238

239

243

244

241

LAST

Scale Score, Grade 8 Math

282

279

284

288

286

4th

Scale Score, Grade 4Reading

219

222

225

223

221

LAST

Scale Score, Grade 8Reading

263

262

267

264

263

4th

Scale Score, Grade 4 Science

148

158

N/A

158

158

LAST

Scale Score, Grade 8 Science

148

153

N/A

158

154

LAST

Scale Score, Grade 8 Writing

160

151

155

158

153

First

 

 

The high salaries in IL are not anomalies.

As can see from the following chart of the Top 10 Salaries in each state the differences are widespread.

  Top 10 Teacher SalariesIllinoisand Adjacent States  
           

 

IL

KY

IA

WI

MO

          203,155        95,179       111,188       108,152

119,909

          199,887        95,179       105,700       108,150

116,771

          198,667        93,518       104,213       104,986

112,657

          195,437        88,574         99,979       101,018

112,515

          186,364        88,574         95,924         99,209

109,767

          185,993        87,247         94,462         99,203

108,369

          185,736        87,247         92,725         98,871

104,898

          185,451        87,247         92,471         98,871

103,293

          183,777        85,638         91,389         97,534

102,180

          182,686        85,019         91,227         97,457

101,692

Average            190,715           89,342           97,928         101,345        109,205

 

 

And if we look at the number of teachers making more than $100,000 per year the differences between the states are even more pronounced: Illinois has 445 times more $100,000 teachers that the other four stets COMBINED.

 

Number of teachers with salaries in excess of $100,000/yr. ($11,000/mo.):

 

Illinois =  7,576

Kentuck y =  ZERO

Iowa =  2

Wisconsin =  4

Missouri =  11

 

Here are the top Illinois teacher salaries for various subjects. Notice how many high salaries are in non-academic subjects.

 

 

$100,000 Teacher Salaries By Subject Fiscal Year Ending June 30, 2011
     
     

Subject

2011 High Salary

Greater $100K 2010

Phys Ed

203,154

760

Music

182,686

284

Art

179,660

213

Drama

179,660

30

French

176,600

55

Automotive Repair

175,122

24

English

174,300

545

Drive Ed

166,658

143

Elementary Education

161,104

1006

Librarians

155,546

53

Radio and TV Broadcasting

154,413

15

Cabinet maker

146,295

21

Nurse

136,166

35

Foodservice

135,997

17

Latin

135,912

10

Clothing/Apparel

131,620

8

 

 

Excessive salaries lead to excessively high pensions.

With pension payouts in the $5 million range for the last four years top earners one needs to ask if this is the best use of taxpayer dollars.

 

Top Teacher Salaries 2008 – 2011 and Their Current Pensions      

Year

Name

Final Salary

Subject

Current pension

Years Taught in IL

Age At Retire.

Est. Total Pension Payout In Millions

2008

Vanderschoot

196,000

Art

125,852

38

58

$4.80

2009

Kimpton

189,000

Music

130,472

33

54

$5.89

2010

Mitz

191,000

Phys Ed

113,616

31

55

$4.87

2011

Sebald

203,000

Phys Ed

127,875

32

57

$5.31

 

 

And it is not just the top earners either. Just in 2011 alone nineteen 9-months a year teachers retired with pensions in excess of $100,000. In total the TRS (Teachers Retirement System) has 2,840 retirees with pensions over $100,000 and the number is growing by 20% per year.

 

Here’s a list of the nineteen 2011 teacher retirees with $100,000 plus pensions. Note there are no 40 year careers here in fact they are as low as 27 years and the average is only 32 years. Compare this with a private sector worker starting work at age 22 and working 40 years to get the maximum $22,000 Social Security pension at age 62.

 

2011 Teacher Retirees With Beginning Pensions Over $100,000    
   Name School District

Age

 First Year Pension

Years’ Work in IL

1

Sebald, David F LeydenCHSD 212

57

     127,875              32

2

Oddo, Linda L NewTrierTWP HSD 203

58

     122,260              32

3

Kay, Bruce Community HSD 155

56

     117,765              32

4

Filippo, Anthony Lake ForestCHSD 115

56

     117,038              34

5

Gasper, Kip E Highland Park  113

57

     116,838              32

6

Kirwan, James P HinsdaleTWP HSD 86

56

     113,930              32

7

Nihells, Robert A LakePark CHSD 108

55

     111,929              33

8

Kaplan, Susan Highland Park  113

65

     111,529              29

9

Lagesse, Gary L ThorntonTWP HSD 205

58

     109,231              34

10

Scahill, Joseph G DuPage HSD 88

56

     108,801              33

11

Ratajczyk, Bruce Highland Park  113

57

     107,576              32

12

Fischer, Steven D LakePark CHSD 108

57

     107,409              32

13

Richards, Evan Lake ForestCHSD 115

57

     106,299              35

14

Vanko, James S LeydenCHSD 212

55

     106,234              32

15

Blazevich, Richard NorthfieldTWP HSD 225

60

     105,936              36

16

Zizzo, Gary A LakePark CHSD 108

58

     104,925              27

17

Vogel, Debra C LakePark CHSD 108

58

     103,546              33

18

Cantor, Iris L NilesTWP CHSD 219

60

102,746 28

19

Koval, Karen J LakePark CHSD 108

55

     100,220              31

 

Obviously in the other four states there are no teachers with $100,000 pensions since there are only 11 with salaries over $100,000. This means in 2011 there were more teachers who retired with pensions greater than $100,000 (19) than four other states had teachers with salaries over $100,000 (11).

 

All of these statistics show that IL pension deficit is due more too excessive salaries than it does to lack of state payments. If Illinois had salaries similar to our neighbors in KY, IA, WI and MO our pension problems would be much less worse than they are.

 

If IL salaries and pensions were the same as WI we would save $5 billion per year in education costs.

 

High pensions are due to high salaries and high salaries are due to the NEA. Unless we control the NEA and their undue influence on IL politicians the pension problem will never be solved.

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