• The Associated Press

SC Gov Hopeful Cunningham Proposes 10% Teacher Pay Bump

Joe Cunningham, who is running to unseat Republican Gov. Henry McMaster, is proposing raising starting salaries for new K-12 teachers by nearly 40% over the next decade, part of a plan the Democrat said is desperately needed to help the state recruit retain educators.

“Year, after year, after year, our teachers have been simply getting scraps,” Cunningham told The Associated Press before rolling out his plan on Tuesday. “People have been gaslighting them, calling them heroes while not showing them their appreciation through the state budget or the district budget.”

The proposal calls for an immediate 10% raise for all public-school teachers, gradually raising starting teacher salaries from $36,000 to $50,000 by 2030, at the end of a second Cunningham term if he wins this fall and is reelected.