California's teachers have been among the highest paid in the country since at least 1970, although these salary figures aren't adjusted for regional costs of living and don't include health care and pension benefits. In 1970, the state had the third-highest average salary for teachers. For several years before the Great Recession, its average teacher salary was the nation's highest, and in 2015-16, the state ranked 2nd, with an average salary of $78,723, behind New York’s average salary of $80,735.

Chart by John Osborn D'Agostino. Updated by Daniel J. Willis, Justin Allen and Yuxuan Xie.

Note: Each year in the charts and graphs refers to both the calendar year and the fiscal year. Thus, 2013 incorporated data from the fiscal year 2013-14 (July 1 through June 30) as well as the calendar year 2013.