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Workforce report highlights gaps between early-childhood, K-12 educators


July 5, 2018
Linda Jacobson
Education Dive

Dive Brief:

  • Over the past two years, median wages for educators working in the early-childhood field have increased by 7%, but those working in child-care and preschool programs still earn a fraction of what kindergarten and elementary teachers make, according to the Early Childhood Workforce Index 2018, released by the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment.
  • Preschool teachers working in schools come the closest to earning what kindergarten teachers do — an average of $26.88 per hour compared to $31.29 per hour. But those working with infants and toddlers, even if they have a bachelor’s degree, still make more than $4 less than those teaching in a pre-K class.
  • The authors include several recommendations focusing on areas, such as providing early educators with access to and support in obtaining degrees when states increase educational requirements, setting short- and long-term goals for increasing wages, and strengthening workforce data. “The case for changing how our nation invests in education and values its teachers is incontrovertible as a matter of justice to the entire teaching workforce, their own families, and the children of the families they serve,” they write.