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Kentucky GOP gubernatorial nominee advocates higher starting pay for Kentucky teachers

A Kentucky Republican is pushing for a higher starting pay for state teachers if he is elected governor. Daniel Cameron also says he will reduce their administrative paperwork.

Republican Daniel Cameron said Wednesday that he will push to raise starting pay for Kentucky teachers and reduce their administrative paperwork if he's elected governor.

Rolling out the framework of his education plan, Cameron promoted "parents’ rights" and plunged into culture war issues that conservatives are pushing to the forefront of education policy debates.

Cameron pledged to stop any statewide effort to promote "any curriculum or policy that encourages the teaching of woke ideologies" in public K-12 schools, his campaign news release said.

Cameron, who is Kentucky's attorney general, is among a dozen candidates vying for the GOP gubernatorial nomination in the state's May primary. Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear is seeking reelection in the Republican-trending Bluegrass State.

Cameron laid out his plan for teachers' pay — an issue that Beshear has made a priority.


"In my first budget I will propose legislation that raises the starting pay for teachers and ensures that no teacher's salary is below the new starting-pay benchmark," Cameron said.

Cameron also said he would propose giving a stipend to every Kentucky teacher to help offset the personal expenses they incur when purchasing school supplies.

Beshear has consistently made improved teacher pay a policy priority since his successful run for governor in 2019. He's now pushing for a 5% pay raise for teachers and other public school employees to help overcome a shortage of classroom educators.

Meanwhile, Cameron said he also would strive to reduce teachers' administrative paperwork, saying that "bureaucrats have made teachers' jobs harder."

"Our teachers should be focused on teaching, not red tape," he said.

Cameron spoke out against the teaching of critical race theory and "woke ideologies."

"Students should go to school to learn the skills necessary to be productive citizens, not to distrust or fear their classmates because of the color of their skin or to have identity politics forced on them," said Cameron, who is Black.

Critical race theory is an academic framework that examines how racism has shaped public policy and institutions.

Cameron said his education plan would put parents, students and teachers "ahead of any ideology or radical influence."

"We have been told we need to make a choice between supporting our teachers and giving parents a say in their children’s education," he said. "That does not have to be the case, and, in my administration, that will end."

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