This report is part of a series on the Leon County school system The series is based on 2015/16 teacher salary data specific to each school and how the salaries relate to a number of performance and demographic factors.
Information on teacher salaries provided to Tallahassee Reports indicates significant variation in average salaries between schools. The information also shows that the average teacher salary at an elementary school does not seem to have any significant correlation with school grades.
The searchable table below shows the school name, school grade and the average teacher salary for twenty-four elementary schools. The data is from the 2015/16 school year. The table can be sorted by all columns.
The data shows that teacher salaries vary from a low of $40,403 at Apalachee Elementary to a high of $47,100 at Hartsfield Elementary. The average salary for all schools is $44,146.
The calculation of average teacher salaries by school grade, provided in the table below, shows little correlation between school grades and teacher pay.
The average teacher salary at A schools is approximately 3.6% higher than the average at the B,C,and D schools. However, there is little correlation between school grades and teacher pay. For example, one of the highest average teacher salaries is at a Hartsfield Elementary School, which was graded as a D school. The average teacher salary at Hartsfield is $47,100.
Leon School Board officials told TR that the major driver of teacher salaries is years of experience. This would indicate that A schools have teachers with slightly more experience that the other schools.
This also indicates that the variation in pay between individual schools is more about teacher experience and less about performance.
Elementary Teacher Salaries and School Grades, by School
School Grade Ave Salary ($)
BOND ELEMENTARY C 45,764
PINEVIEW ELEMEN D 42,056
OAK RIDGE ELEME D 44,531
RILEY ELEMENTAR C 42,048
APALACHEE ELEME C 40,403
ASTORIA PARK EL D 44,234
SABAL PALM ELEM C 45,448
HARTSFIELD ELEM D 47,100
RUEDIGER ELEMEN C 44,743
SPRINGWOOD ELEM C 44,013
SEALEY ELEMENTA B 41,463
CONLEY ELEMENTA C 40,758
SULLIVAN ELEMEN C 41,680
MOORE ELEMENTAR C 41,536
WOODVILLE SCHOO A 42,357
CHAIRES ELEMENT B 47,092
HAWKS RISE A 45,765
FT.BRADEN SCHOO C 43,827
BUCK LAKE ELEME A 46,073
GILCHRIST ELEME A 43,744
CANOPY OAKS ELE C 44,276
ROBERTS ELEMENT A 46,914
DESOTO TRAIL EL A 46,009
KILLEARN LAKES A 46,749
The interesting part of this is the miserably low scores of our elementary schools.
I bet the average income of the families whose children attend the schools are associated with school grades. By the way, there is no way that school grades can be “correlated” with anything. Correlation only relates two quantitative variables.
And actually the data make sense to me. The teacher salaries drop with each grade until the D schools. Those schools have the second highest teacher salaries. Since salaries are most associated with length of service, I can understand that schools with higher grades retain teachers longer, as they are probably more pleasant place to teach. Why the D schools have the second highest salaries is more of a mystery. Perhaps the county offers teachers a bonus to serve at underperforming schools. Another possibility is that underperforming schools have a longer school day and they might have to pay teachers extra for that.
This article is a total misrepresentation of the use of statistics:
Who knew that the number of people who drowned by falling into a swimming-pool correlates with the number of films Nicolas Cage appeared in? And who could anticipate that the per capita consumption of cheese correlates with the number of people who died by becoming tangled in their bedsheets?
I wouldn’t give my name with a comment like that either. Please tell me you are not a registered voter.
It is time for a change…. Run Rocky Run!
I don’t see anything in the statistics presented in the article that suggest a change is needed.
As a teacher at one of these schools, it is enlightening to see how little we’re paid on average (overall, and at my school), as well as the fact that I’m not making the average at my school. I am, however, thankful for my job, and enjoy the responsibility of molding the young ones under me.
Teacher salaries are primarily related to years of employment, not necessarily to the quality of their instruction. A mediocre teacher with many years of teaching experience may be making more than an outstanding teacher with just a few years experience. So, the average teacher salary at a particular school is related to the average years of teaching among the teachers at that school. Average salaries has questionable relevance to the schools grade.
I would be more interested in how the principals salaries correlate to the school grades and the criteria used in their assignments.
Thanks for the research.
Just another example of the broken accountability system, which I call accountabaloney. Teachers need to be treated like professionals. The State Legislature promises that with all the high stakes testing and teachers on annual contracts, our children will do better. Clearly, that is not the case. Leon County doesn’t pay teachers as much as some other districts around the state. LCS Board will say the teacher pay is controlled by the funding by the State Legislature.
This information does a lot in to explain how out of line the raises and pay scale for the top managers at The City of Tallahassee and The Leon County School District Office. Remember, the teachers employed here also contribute to the taxes collected by The City of Tallahassee.
Well put Ms. O.
Some reading this may have forgotten already the 45K$ salary increases of the 3 asst. managers.
I think it would also be interesting to consider this angle to the data: Why so many veteran teachers (avg. salary at a school IS determined by teacher experience) continue to hammer on at lower scoring schools when many could easily switch to a school where student need is not as great.
I often hear people talk about paying teachers based on the yearly test results. These same people work in industries where they hire ONLY those that have the skills and abilities they want in their work force. Public school teachers have never and will never get that option. They receive a list of 20-25 names each year. In that list may be students separated by 12-15 months of age, but even more important, is the 3-5 years of learning difference within that group.
I once heard a veteran teacher tell it this way: Pie makers choose only the best of the best apples to put in their pies, rejecting fruit not up to the standard. Teachers get all types of apples, from picture-perfect to highly bruised, they don’t have the option of rejecting the bruised fruit, and neither would they want it.
Of what possible use is this information? How could I, or anyone, use this information to either help our poor performing schools do better or justify a more equitable salary for our teachers.
As a long-time retired teacher I find it difficult to accept the size of salaries in context with the times. I began my career as a teaching principal in a small rural school at $2800.00 for 10 months.
This information does put in context the weirdness of $50,000.00 RAISES in the same community where the TOTAL ANNUAL SALARY of the best paid teacher is less than that.