Teacher Salaries Become a Bipartisan Cause: Low Pay ‘A Major Crisis in Education’

| USA Today | Alia Wong

Having met and fallen in love through their careers as special education teachers, Natalia Sandoval and her husband tried to make it work as long as they could. But after a while, they could no longer get by on two teacher salaries while raising two sons in Hawaii, not to mention paying back the student loan debt they’d accumulated so they could train to work with students with disabilities. 

Shortly before the pandemic, Sandoval’s husband Joseph traded in the career he loved for one that would keep their family afloat: as a worker on the docks. It helps pay the bills and may even allow them to buy a house one day, but it’s hardly as rewarding, said Sandoval, who knew from an early age growing up on Oahu that she wanted to be a teacher, specifically in special education.

“I stay because I really enjoy working with the kids. … And I like supporting the families more than anything because it's a very difficult world to navigate,” Sandoval said.

But veteran teachers like her and Joseph are often forced to decide whether the job is worth the sacrifices. “We're just surviving, not thriving.”

Read the full article in USA Today.

Imali Ariyarathne, seventh-grade teacher at Langston Hughes Academy, stands in front of her students while introducing them to the captivating world of science

Imali Ariyarathne, seventh-grade teacher at Langston Hughes Academy, introduces her students to the captivating world of science.

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