Caldwell Legislation Seeks to Increase Teacher Salaries Through Local Control

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Contact: State Rep. Chad Caldwell

Office: (405) 557-7317


Legislation that would increase teacher pay by reforming the state’s minimum salary schedule has passed the House Common Education Committee 9 to 4.


House Bill 3539, authored by Rep. Chad Caldwell, grants local school boards more authority in determining teacher pay while removing government obstacles to higher teacher pay.  Under the proposed measure, sole authority for setting teacher salaries would rest with the locally elected school board while allowing a competitive marketplace to occur.


“I have consistently voted for teacher pay raises during my time in the House, however with the failures of these measures I am hoping to increase teacher salaries through other methods,” said Rep. Caldwell, R-Enid. “Increasing teacher salaries is an absolute must, but the decision of how much to pay our teachers should be made by local school boards taking into account local conditions, not by politicians in Oklahoma City.


“Viewed nationally, our current system is failing our teachers. This bill will help accomplish the goal of increasing teacher pay throughout Oklahoma,” said Caldwell.  “Abandoning the antiquated salary schedule at the state level would free districts to pursue a human resources strategy that meets their local needs and adequately recognizes a teacher’s value to their community.”

No state with a minimum salary schedule ranks inside the top 10 nationally in teachers’ pay, while all of the bottom five states have one.  Nothing in the bill would prohibit local districts from establishing their own minimum salary schedule or maintaining the existing salary schedule.


The legislation is now ready to be heard on the House floor.