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Teacher Assistants in the Mississippi Delta have an Enviable Job. Also, they Earn $9 an Hour.

Despite the long hours and low pay—she makes just under $21,000 a year—Riley has an enviable situation compared with many residents of the Mississippi Delta. She can pay most of her bills, works a family-friendly calendar, has health insurance, and might soon pull herself into the middle class—if her studying pays off and she can move from teaching assistant to teacher.