FAIRBANKS - Teacher salaries in Alaska ranked 10th in the nation according to a state-by-state survey of educators pay by the American Federation of Teachers.
Alaska's starting pay for teachers topped the list. Starting teachers in Alaska made on average $36,035, which is less than a percentage point drop from the previous year.
"It's a real positive for Alaska because of the shortage of teachers nationwide," said Ann Shortt, superintendent of the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District. "To know that we've got an attractive salary will help in recruiting."
Average teacher salaries for Alaska educators was $49,028 during the 2001-02 school year, the survey showed. That was up from the previous year.
The national average was $44,367. California topped the list of highest paid teachers with an average salary of $54,348. Among other states at the top; Michigan, Connecticut, Rhode Island and New York.
South Dakota reported the lowest average salary in the survey at $31,383. Teacher salaries in Puerto Rico averaged $25,430.