Arkansas Teachers

Arkansas Senate
Sarah Whites-Koditschek / KUAR News

Teachers in Arkansas are now a signature away from getting annual pay raises for the next four fiscal years, eventually reaching a new minimum of $36,000. 

House Bill 1145, known as the "Teacher Salary Enhancement Act," passed unanimously in the Arkansas Senate Thursday with a vote of 35-0. 

Though the bill passed with unanimous support, questions about the bill's economic impact on schools after the four-year period raised some concerns among lawmakers. 

Sarah Kellogg

Some Arkansas teachers are a step closer to getting higher salaries. A house bill that would raise the teacher pay salary schedule passed Tuesday in the House Committee on Education.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Bruce Cozart, R-Hot Springs, and over 90 other representatives, increases the minimum teacher salary each year for four years, eventually reaching a new minimum of $36,000. It also annually increases the pay minimum for each step of pay schedule for those with bachelor’s and master’s degrees for four years.

Sarah Kellogg / KUAR News

School districts in Arkansas could have the concrete ability to consider out-of-state teaching experience when negotiating salary. The House Education Committee passed the bill by a voice vote Thursday morning.

According to Dr. Tony Prothro, the executive director of the Arkansas School Board Association, some public schools were already considering out-of-state teaching years, but it was unclear whether this practice was completely legal.