Sunday, March 29, 2009
The Cost of Improving Secondary School Education in America.
According to the Congressional Budget Office, we now know that we can expect a deficit of $1.7 trillion for the fiscal year 2010 of the United States.
We also know, from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, that there were about 1,133,000 secondary school teachers in America in 2006.
And, as of December 2008, the US Government has already committed to financial bailouts worth $8.5 trillion.
With the foregoing as background, let us review what it would mean to increase the salaries of secondary school teachers. (We all know that merely increasing the salary is not adequate).
Let us assume that the average yearly salary of secondary school teachers in America is $50,000. Let us further assume that, in order to attract and keep the right secondary school teaching talent, we will need to pay the teachers a salary of $100,000/year.
Thus, the additional yearly cost of paying the teachers a better salary is of the order of $50,000*1,000,000, or $50B/year.
Is $50B/year a high cost for educating America's children? In the light of dollar deficits in excess of $1 trillion/year? Or, even when we have surplus budgets, in a $15 trillion/year economy?