Salaries Soar for NEA Union Workers

By Seth Lewis | July 7, 2008 | 8:28pm EDT

( - The National Education Association's union professionals are paid far more than the teachers they represent, prompting one researcher to question the organization's lobbying motives.

According to an internal NEA survey, professional staffers at the New Jersey Education Association rank first nationally with average earnings of $100,018 - nearly twice as much as the state's teachers. In Connecticut, ranked second, NEA union pros make $93,115 on average, and salaries in other states have risen by as much as 60 percent since 1991.

That has Mike Antonucci - a conservative critic and watchdog of the NEA who obtained the report and published it on his Internet site - wondering whether the union cares more about making money than reforming education.

The NEA lobbies for higher teacher salaries and smaller classrooms - both of which translate into increased union dues and inflated salaries for union professionals, said Antonucci.

New Jersey teachers, also the highest paid in the country, average $52,000 a year, and were assessed an average of $462 in dues last year, according to the Newark Star-Ledger.

As for the NEA professionals, "These are people that make a lot of money," Antonucci said. "There's no doubt about it. And they're collecting a large amount of dues from teachers in order to pay these salaries."

"You have to separate what's good for education from the self-interest of the union," said Antonucci, a California-based researcher who founded the Education Intelligence Agency.

While they don't dispute the survey's validity, NEA officials dismissed Antonucci's allegations and defended the salaries as suitable pay for workers who typically have graduate degrees and many years in the education industry.

"What the critics do to us is what they do with teachers too: They take the attitude that anyone who has to do with education should have a suppressed salary," said Karen Joseph, a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Education Association.

CNSNews Reader,

The media are hard at work weaving a web of confusion, misinformation, and conspiracy surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

CNSNews covers the stories that the liberal media are afraid to touch. It drives the national debate through real, honest journalism—not by misrepresenting or ignoring the facts.

CNSNews has emerged as the conservative media’s lynchpin for original reporting, investigative reporting, and breaking news. We are part of the only organization purely dedicated to this critical mission and we need your help to fuel this fight.

Donate today to help CNSNews continue to report on topics that the liberal media refuse to touch. $25 a month goes a long way in the fight for a free and fair media.

And now, thanks to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, you can make up to a $300 gift to the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization of your choice and use it as a tax deduction on your 2020 taxes, even if you take the standard deduction on your returns.

— The CNSNews Team



Sign up for our CNSNews Daily Newsletter to receive the latest news.