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North Carolina Teacher Salary

As a North Carolina teacher, you’ll earn a competitive salary, comprehensive benefits and opportunities to grow your career. Read this page and download our salary report for all the details!

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How much do teachers make in North Carolina?

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In North Carolina, teachers earn a base salary set by the state. Most counties offer additional pay on top of that. That means your salary will depend on your location, as well as your degree and experience.

In 2022, North Carolina's average teacher starting salary was $37,676, including both state and county pay. 

Average salary refers to what all teachers make, on average. That includes people who have been in the job for years. North Carolina’s average teacher salary in 2022 was $54,863 (including state + county pay). (1)

Want more salary info? Our free Salary & Benefits Report has salaries from a range of districts all over North Carolina — so you can see specific numbers from your region! 

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There are a number of ways to increase your salary, including advanced degrees, leading extracurriculars and pursuing advanced certifications or meeting performance benchmarks.

Increase Your Teacher Salary

An example of how a teacher could increase salary. A high school math teacher in Wilmington with 5 years' experience could earn a $42K base salary, plus additional pay for a master’s degree + county salary supplement + hard-to-fill subject area bonus + coaching JV soccer, adding up to total pay of $57,200.

You’ve got options to earn even more as a teacher. Here are a few ways you can boost your pay: 

  • Teach in a high-need area. You may earn more if you teach a shortage-area subject, like math or special education, or if you teach in a low-performing school.  
  • Earn an advanced credential. You’ll earn higher pay with a master’s degree, or if you earn your National Board Certification. In NC, National Board Certified teachers can receive a 12 percent salary increase! (2)
  • Lead an extracurricular. Many districts offer stipends if you lead an extracurricular, such as yearbook, choir or athletics. This extra pay can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars! 
  • Get credit for prior experience. You could earn more for work experience relevant to your teaching subject! Talk to your school district hiring manager to determine your eligibility. 

Benefits for Teachers

As a teacher, you can expect comprehensive health insurance — plus a retirement plan, vacation time and more.

Get $500 for testing on us!

Young man surrounded by colorful icons indicating money, a guide, and a checklist

Need to take a teaching test? We'll cover up to $500 in test prep and test registration fees. 

You can:

  • Get unlimited access to Praxis test prep materials through Study.com.
  • Request a Praxis voucher so you can register for the test for free. This includes retakes!
  • Get reimbursed for additional exams, like the Pearson or EdTPA, or study materials that better suit your learning style, like 1-on-1 tutoring.

How much do similar professions make in North Carolina?

A bar chart of selected NC average salaries. The chart says: Registered Nurse - $76K; Teacher - $55K; Paralegal - $52K; Graphic Designer - $51K; Community Health Worker - $48K; Bookkeeper - $42K. Source: U.S. Department of Labor

Salary numbers are important, but you may be wondering how teaching compares to other skilled professions. 

A North Carolina teacher’s salary is comparable to or even higher than many other fields. Plus, teachers are contracted to work about 190 days each year — compared to 260 work days in most other fields. (3)

Career Growth for NC Teachers

As an educator, you can grow your career — and your salary — both in and out of the classroom.

Learn More About Teacher Salary and Benefits

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From career opportunities to student loan forgiveness to specific district salary information, our Salary & Benefits Report has even more details about how to make the most of your teaching career.

Even better — it’s completely free.

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Sign up for access to everything we offer, right from your dashboard.

  1. Learn about your licensure options.
  2. Explore teacher training programs.
  3. Get support for teaching tests.
  4. Apply for financial aid.
  5. Chat with licensure experts via live chat, small group sessions or 1-on-1 meetings.

It’s all FREE and brought to you by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and our statewide partners.

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  1. “Teacher Pay and Student Spending: How Does Your State Rank?” National Education Association. April 24, 2023.  https://www.nea.org/resource-library/educator-pay-and-student-spending-how-does-your-state-rank
  2. National Board Certification. NC Department of Public Instruction. https://www.dpi.nc.gov/educators/national-board-certification
  3. Salary Finder. CareerOneStop, U.S. Department of Labor. https://www.careeronestop.org/toolkit/wages/find-salary.aspx