In many cities across the nation, home values and rents have risen so high they are pricing teachers out of the market. Young teachers either spend the majority of their paychecks on rent, deal with long daily commutes, or leave the profession. In a survey of public school teachers who left the profession in 2012, two thirds of those who said they would consider returning rated increased salaries as an important factor in that decision.
Raising salaries is difficult for districts, given the twin burdens of state funding cuts since the Great Recession and skyrocketing costs for health care and pensions. But innovators in Newark, New Jersey, have found a solution: a new “Teachers Village” that gives teachers subsidized rents in the center of the city.
Teachers receive discounts of seven to 15% off units’ market rate, and currently seventy percent of the residents are educators. Twenty percent of the apartments are discounted for individuals earning up to 80% of Newark’s Area Median Income, while the remaining 10 percent are rented at market rates.
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