Video: Teacher Explains How Little A Master’s Degree Will Increase Her Salary

Ms. Zak, also known as @ms.zak, is a middle school educator who maintains a profile on TikTok where she often shares content related to her profession. In a recent video, she made a remark that sparked controversy among viewers.

The video, which was uploaded at the end of July, indicated that Ms. Zak had just received her master’s degree. According to her, the main issue was how little the achievement would affect her pay. “I got my master’s degree in education,” she captioned the video. “My salary will only increase from about $53,000 to $56,000.”

Ms. Zak then made a comparison between her earnings and that of a friend who, despite just having a bachelor’s degree, she claims, makes $30,000 more.

However, as Ms. Zak has pointed out, even that raise isn’t enough for some teachers. Her video garnered a number of responses from educators who shared their perspectives on related topics.  “Mine will go from 46,000 to 50,000 with my Masters after 7 YEARS in the profession,” one commenter wrote. “Teachers are so underappreciated,” another user agreed. “Teachers and social workers,” another added. “it’s soul-crushing to be treated as a lesser professional when ppl have no idea the level of knowledge needed.”

While this was going on, others were wondering why Ms. Zak was “complaining” about her compensation since she knew it coming into the position. She reacted with a follow-up that addressed those charges in her response.  “Yeah, teaching was my choice,” she says in the clip. “So what? Does that mean I’m not allowed to advocate for better working conditions and better wages?”

It was reported by U.S. News & World Report that the median compensation for a teacher in the year 2020 was $62,870. The salaries of high school teachers are, on average, only a hair more than those of middle school teachers.

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