How N.C. teacher pay works

Teacher compensation is more than just a salary. Here’s what North Carolina provides.


Minimum scale

: The state sets a minimum salary that ranges from $30,800 for 0-5 years of experience to $53,180 for 36 years and up.


Local supplement

: Most districts use county money to boost pay. CMS adds $4,618 to the starting salary and $9,066 at the top. Wake supplements range from $4,389 to $9,174.


Master’s pay

: For current teachers, a master’s degree brings a 10 percent pay hike. The legislature has eliminated this pay for new hires and those who haven’t already earned advanced degrees in 2014-15.


Board certification

: Teachers earn an additional 12 percent for certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, which requires at least three years’ experience.


Longevity pay

: State longevity pay ranges from 1.5 percent of the base salary at 10 years of state employment to 4.5 percent at 25 years and up (experience outside North Carolina doesn’t count).


Pilot programs

: Some schools offer performance-based pay and recruitment bonuses and/or pay supplements for hard-to-staff schools or subjects. They’re generally paid for with government or private grants and disappear when money runs out.


Charter schools

: The independent public schools don’t have to follow the state pay plan, and participation in the retirement system is optional.

Related stories from Charlotte Observer