Debating if public school teachers are over- or under-paid is a hot topic whenever cuts to education funding loom or student test scores are released.
Statewide, the average teacher salary declined slightly during the 2011-12 academic year to $68,531, the Bakersfield Californian reported.
A new online comparison tool lets the public compare average teacher salaries by school district, revealing that Palo Alto teachers are far above the average teacher pay in California.
Overall, Santa Clara County educators are on-par with the state average.
But the California Teachers Association doesn't put much stock in the comparison tool. Teacher salary scales are configured with formulas that take into account years of experience and education level, but many young and early-career teachers have been laid off due to budget cuts in recent years.
The state acknowledges in the tables that any two districts with identical salary schedules could have different average salaries, depending on their teachers' years of experience and education.Teacher Salaries 2011-12
School District Average Pay Student Enrollment Cupertino USD $72,252 18,650 Fremont Union HS District
$75,518 10,535 Los Altos SD
$73,497 4,486 Saratoga Elementary SD $82,288 2,109 Los Gatos-Saratoga Union High $92,414 3,246 Mountain View-Whisman SD
$66,253 4,969 Mountain View-Los Altos Union HS
$101,293 3,652 Palo Alto USD
$85,721 12,205 Santa Clara Co. Office of Education $76,362 6,789 Source: Ed-Data
California public school teachers make 16.1 percent less than other college graduates, according to the California Teachers Association. The disparity increases for those with master's degrees.
How much do you think teachers should be paid in Los Altos-area schools? Tell us in the comment section below.
Also on Los Altos Patch
Deadline Extended: Volunteer For A Los Altos Commission
Are You Patch's Cutest Couple?
A Parent's Ideas For Prop. 39 Negotiations: Sharing & Flexibility
Thoughts on Choice: The Big 'Why'
Letter to Bullis Charter School Board From LASD
UPDATE: Lockdown Cleared at Multiple Area Schools
Don't miss news that's important to you