Governor DeSantis proposes raising minimum salary for teachers in Florida

Governor Ron DeSantis wants to increase the minimum salary for teachers in Florida to $47,500. ( Governor’s Press Office )

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will ask the Legislature to increase the minimum starting salary for public school teachers to $47,500 a year.

DeSantis made his announcement in Clay County on Monday, where he said the average teacher starting salary is just under $39,000 a year. He said about 100,000 teachers statewide would receive a raise under the proposal.

DeSantis said the state is currently in the bottom half of states in terms of minimum pay for teachers. If approved, he said it would put Florida in the top five nationally.

“We are experiencing a teacher shortage in Florida,” said Governor DeSantis. “With a strong economy and plenty of jobs available in other fields, unfortunately too many college graduates are unwilling to enter the teaching profession. My proposal to increase the minimum salary for teachers to $47,500 will help alleviate this shortage and elevate the teaching profession to the level of appreciation it deserves. This is long overdue, and I look forward to working with the legislature to make this a reality.”

The governor doesn't have to release his full budget proposal until December. He said the teacher salary proposal would cost $603 million, and said it is "easily doable."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.