Surviving On A Teachers Salary, How We Do It!

Surviving On A Teachers Salary, How We Do It!

Surviving on a Teachers Salary
photo source: Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Hey beautiful people!

I have entered my second year of teaching and at first, I thought it was going to be decent pay, but let me tell you, struggling for real! Some days I think to myself, I can’t even afford to work here! Other days, I say to myself, I feel like I am paying to teach! Think about it, the schooling, paying for certifications, buying classroom supplies and your supplies to be an effective teacher.

See, I relocated 2 years ago, December, and changed my career to become a teacher. I already had my bachelor’s and master’s but none in teaching so I had to take the alternative route. There are many programs depending on your city/state. There are programs like Teach for America which rejected me TWICE (*&^#&(98), Urban Teachers, Teaching Fellows and more. Many of the programs give you a living stipend and pay for your master’s degree, so teaching and earning a degree which is a lot!

I did an alternative program where I paid a deposit, had about 20 online classes to take, get contact hours, once I PAID to take my certification you could get an internship year. During that internship year, you teach with a full salary, have internship projects, professional development and more. I paid for the program, they took $400 out of my check for 10 months, and I still had to pay for another test to get fully certified. So total in 1 year I paid about $4,500! UUGHHH

Ok so now I am a teacher, paying rather large bills, driving about 45-50 miles roundtrip a day, children ask for our food and of course, we give them some because they hate the school lunch.

Teachers Salary

Ok, so how do we survive on our teacher’s salary? I am in a lot of teacher groups on Facebook, and someone asked the question and because I was so moved by it I had to share their thoughts! Below out of almost 600 responses, here were the most repeated top 7.

Surviving A Teachers Salary + my two cents

  1. GET MARRIED- Ok, many people talked about having a spouse as their way to survive a teacher’s budget. Kinda pissed me off though, because one, dating effing sucks! Two, have you tried dating in 2016/2017? I really felt that was very unhelpful.
  2. Get roommates – Ok, that is cool and all and most younger teachers do it! Me, I like my peace, I don’t like people in my space and I like walking around the WHOLE house naked… Next…
  3. Get a side hustle – Ok yes… something I love to do! BUT REMEMBER, it takes money to make money. I already told you I am struggling and you want me to start a business 🙂 My business is below, by the way, help a sistah out!
  4. Move to a blue state– Supposedly, they make more I don’t know! BUT I do know there are many different districts and states that pay amazingly well but also have a high cost of living.
  5. Budget– This is something I REALLY need to work on! No complaints, I am just not taking care of business!
  6. Get a second gig – I don’t know about you but I work like 50-55 hours a week at work and many nights and weekend I do more work, so having a second job is hard! I usually am mentally and emotionally exhausted and don’t want to do anything else!
  7. Scale Back– Yes, I can see that! Not going out for every meal, cutting the cable, being efficient with electricity, maybe off-brands for awhile!

Teaching is such a rewarding career and I absolutely love it! Every day I am reminded of why I am here and not only do they need me but I need them as well.

Although my students say they would never be a teacher, I remain proud and honored to be in this role!

So as you can see, surviving a teacher’s salary can be done, it just takes the work and being intentional and aware of those finances!

So speaking of my side-hustle I have a few 🙂

I recently published a themed journal called Pendrops & Doodles: Attitude = Gratitude 21 days of journaling prompts and activities to create a grateful lifestyle. Pick your copy up today!

Teachers Salary

I also love to create and have an Etsy Shop with handmade home decor! 

Teachers Salary


If you just want to donate some money because you love the blog and want to support me in my efforts, here is my PayPal address! Thank you in advance!

CNBC Stated the Top 5 Lowest and the Highest Paying States

The five lowest-paying states for teachers salary:

1. Oklahoma

Annual mean wage: $42,460

2. Mississippi

Annual mean wage: $43,950

3. South Dakota

Annual mean wage: $44,210

4. North Carolina

Annual mean wage: $45,220

5. West Virginia

Annual mean wage: $45,240


Highest Paid Teachers Salary

1. Alaska

Annual mean wage: $82,020

2. New York

Annual mean wage: $81,410

3. Connecticut

Annual mean wage: $76,260

4. New Jersey

Annual mean wage: $75,250

5. California

Annual mean wage: $74,940


Do you have other ways to survive on a teacher’s salary? Are you or have you been a teacher? What are some of your experiences?

HBCU’s with the best bang for your buck!

Peace and Blessings,

Thanks for reading the BougieBlackBlogger a blog to inspire and encourage. Contact me if you need Social Media Marketing a speaker for events or blogging assistance.

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