During the 1986-87 academic year, teacher salaries in the Detroit Public School District averaged $33,206. Today, the figure is an estimated $35,000. Our survey of private schools found teacher salaries ranged from between $12,000 and $25,000. The estimated average was between $18,000 and $21,000. At Benedictine High School, the principal noted that the school board had succeeded in raising teacher salaries to 70% of public school levels. As noted by the school librarian however, it is not money that makes the difference in education; it is philosophy, leadership, and values.

In general, Hanushek's report indicates that the relationship between student performance and teacher salaries is statistically insignificant. Of 69 studies reviewed, 54 revealed that teacher salary and educational performance were not statistically related. Of the remaining 15 studies, 11 found a positive relationship and 4 found a negative relationship. [22]

Closer to home, teacher salaries in the Detroit Public School District exceeded those of the Southgate Community District, yet Detroit student achievement was significantly poorer than that of Southgate pupils. [23] Again, teacher salary, like class size and educational expenditure per child, is not a significant determinant of educational performance. Accordingly, we must look elsewhere.