In 1997, I did a cartoon of a monk and a teacher recruiter sitting next to each other at a job fair. The monk says to the recruiter, “That vow of poverty thing is killing us, too.” Since then, teachers have gotten a few raises here and there. But things like inflation, health insurance costs, etc. have eaten into those raises. Those who teach don’t do it to get rich. Most teach because it is a passion. Still, when you see a young teacher working a side job and then going home to grade papers, you have to wonder, “can we do better?”

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Marshall Ramsey, a nationally recognized editorial cartoonist, shares his cartoons and travels the state as Mississippi Today’s Editor-At-Large. He’s also host of a weekly statewide radio program and a television program on Mississippi Public Broadcasting and is the author of several books. Marshall is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and a 2019 recipient of the University of Tennessee Alumni Professional Achievement Award.