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Those of us who have the good fortune to be married to a member of the teaching profession share a common bond; the depressing, from the educator's viewpoint, state of teacher salaries is a frequent topic of conversation in our homes. These discussions usually begin with our mate bemoaning the fact that his or her income lags far behind this or that other occupation. We then respond in order to soothe the ego, and perhaps if the discussion occurs at the dinner table, to move the conversation to a more palatable subject that the hours are short, the vacations long, and the nonpecuniary rewards of the profession are without equal. Often as not, if the students have been manageable that day, this answer will suffice. As an economist, married to an educator employed by the Virginia public school system, the proper response to this familiar dissatisfac­tion with salaries is a more vexing problem.

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