Teacher Compensation Policy
The state should encourage districts to provide compensation for related prior subject-area work experience. This goal remains unchanged in 2021.
Requirements: North Carolina teachers are awarded one year of credit,
for salary purposes, for every two years of "full-time relevant
non-teaching work experience" prior to earning a bachelor's degree and one
year of experience credit for every year of "full-time relevant
non-teaching experience" after earning a bachelor's degree. "Relevant
non-teaching work experience" is defined as professional work experience
in public or private sectors that is directly related to the individual's area
of licensure and work assignment.
NC State Board of Education Policy Manual, LICN-006
As a result of North Carolina's strong compensation for prior work policies, no recommendations are provided.
North Carolina did not respond to NCTQ's request to review this analysis for accuracy.
8C: Prior Work
Districts should be allowed to pay new teachers with relevant work experience more than other new teachers. State and district salary structures frequently fail to recognize that new teacher hires are not necessarily new to the workforce. Some new teachers bring with them deep work experience that is directly related to the subject matter they will teach. For example, the hiring of a new high school chemistry teacher with 20 years' experience as a chemical engineer would likely be a great boon to any district. Yet most salary structures would place this individual at the same point on the pay schedule as a new teacher straight out of college. Compensating these teachers commensurate with their experience is an important recruitment and retention strategy, particularly when other, non-teaching opportunities in these fields are likely to be more financially lucrative.
Specifics of teacher pay should largely be left to local decision making. However, states should use policy mechanisms to inform districts that it is not only permissible, but also necessary, to compensate new teachers with relevant prior work experience.