Keeping Teacher Pay Low Is Biblical?

February 7, 2012 ( – An Alabama state senator has claimed that increasing teacher pay will attract people who aren’t “called to teach.”

Senator Shadrack McGill said at a prayer breakfast in Fort Payne: “It’s a Biblical principle. If you double a teacher’s pay scale, you’ll attract people who aren’t called to teach,” the Dekalb County Times-Journal reports.  

“To go in and raise someone’s child for eight hours a day, or many people’s children for eight hours a day, requires a calling. It better be a calling in your life,” McGill claimed.  

“And these teachers that are called to teach, regardless of the pay scale, they would teach. It’s just in them to do. It’s the ability that God give ’em. And there are also some teachers, it wouldn’t matter how much you would pay them, they would still perform to the same capacity,” he added.  

Last year, McGill introduced a bill that would tie legislators’ pay to the average teacher’s pay, including benefits. He later claimed teachers in Alabama rank fourth in the nation in average pay and benefits of about $65,000. “The AEA [Alabama Education Association] would have a tough time with that because they don’t want people knowing that information,” McGill told an audience in Fort Payne in November.  

State Senator Phil Williams said last week he would introduce a bill to raise the pay of teachers on the job for fewer than nine years by 2.5%. Williams said the state can’t afford to give a raise to all teachers.