Teacher pay bumps, 'unquestionably a good thing'

Earlier this week Gov. DeSantis announced that he wants the minimum teacher salary in the state of Florida to be $47,500. Such an increase would have an immediate, substantial impact on the local economy, as DeSoto County School District is the largest employer in DeSoto County. Setting a minimum statewide salary for teachers is unquestionably a good thing.

However, as a mathematics teacher who works at DeSoto County High School and has taught in DeSoto for 10 of years with a salary of $44,000, I’m left out of the governor’s proposal. My current salary would be raised but not to a comparable level of a new teacher. A new teacher graduating college this year will make the same salary as me their first year, if this proposal is approved. I have dedicated my life to the students of DeSoto, often to my own financial detriment. I don’t think it’s too much to ask that the governor come up with a plan that ensures that all educators are given a fair raise.

My time and my experience in the classroom have value; my students and their parents can attest to that. The question that remains is, will the governor and the legislature also see that my value, or will they continue to take the hard work and sacrifice of so many career educators in Florida for granted?

Chad Mansfield

Port Charlotte

Oct. 22 International Stuttering Awareness Day

Oct. 22 is International Stuttering Awareness Day. Stuttering is the only disability people still laugh at, but we’re working to change that! Just over 70 million people around the world stutter, including more than three million Americans. Most people know someone who stutters, but few understand the condition, what causes it and how it is treated. Many famous people, including actors, singers, statesmen and athletes, are among those who stutter. One in five children stutter for a time during their development.

For more than 70 years, the Stuttering Foundation has offered trusted information and help for those who stutter. For more information, visit www.StutteringHelp.org or call 800-992-9392.

Jane Fraser

President, The Stuttering Foundation

Memphis, Tenn.

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