AUSTIN (Talk1370.com) -- One Austin-area lawmaker is pushing for Texas teachers to receive a significant pay increase - the largest in state history.
State Rep. James Talarico (D-Round Rock) unveiled House Bill 1548 on Tuesday at the Capitol, flanked by several Democratic lawmakers. Talarico's proposal comes as lawmakers are working with a record budget surplus.
“Raising teacher pay is something we can do and something we must do,” Talarico said during a press conference.
The bill would increase teacher pay by $15,000, raising the minimum pay to $48,660 for zero years of experience. The average teacher pay would rise to $73,887.
According to data from the National Education Association, the average starting teacher salary in 2021 was $41,770.
Talarico's proposal would also provide a 25% pay increase for school support staff - including nurses, counselors, bus drivers, and cafeteria workers.
"House Bill 1548 would be the biggest teacher pay raise in Texas history," said Talarico. "In Texas, we go big or we go home. Let’s go big on teacher pay."