Lt. Gov. Brian Calley Underestimates Teacher Pay — By $26,000

Candidate needs better information

Republican Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, who is running for governor, recently announced that he will lead a ballot initiative campaign to switch the Michigan Legislature from full-time to part-time status.

“My proposal limits the legislature to 90 consecutive days of session and cuts the pay by more than half — setting it equal to what our teachers are paid,” Calley said in his press release.

State legislators are paid $71,685 a year, so a 50 percent reduction would come out to a $35,800 salary.

ForTheRecord says: Calley is way off on how much public school teachers earn in Michigan.

The highest paid teacher in the state in 2015-16 worked for the Troy school district and earned $119,144. The average teacher salary in Michigan that year was $61,875, according to the Michigan Department of Education.

If Calley was referring to the average starting salary of a Michigan public school teacher, he came close. A Michigan Education Association analysis of the union contracts of 438 Michigan school districts found an average starting salary of $35,851.

Editor's Note: An updated story has been posted with a response from Lt. Gov. Calley noting that the proposal sets legislative salaries equal to teacher on a per day schedule.