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Teachers Are Becoming A Hot Commodity As South Carolina’s Teacher Shortfall Worsens

Ten thousand dollars will buy you a lot in Gaffney. 

It’s a down payment on a house. It’s half of the per-capita income in the area.

And it’s what the Cherokee County School District is willing to pay as a signing bonus for a certified teacher.

Faced with a persistent and worsening teacher shortage, school districts around South Carolina have been ratcheting up recruitment efforts in recent years. Cherokee County’s singing bonus of up to $10,000, which applies to new hires in specific high-demand positions and requires a two-year commitment, is one of the more aggressive recruiting tactics in a state that ranks 38th in average teacher salary.