I've lived in Spearfish. I've seen Gillette. No one can convince me that Gillette is a nicer place to live and work and love than Spearfish.

But former Spearfish teacher Lynnae Fox disagrees. Wyoming's teacher pay just enticed her and several colleagues across the border:

Lynnae Fox is one of seven teachers from South Dakota who have been recruited to Gillette. Fox is a new fifth grade teacher at buffalo ridge elementary.

Fox spent the last four years teaching second grade in Spearfish, S.D., before taking her new position.

The Campbell County superintendent says a lot of out of state teachers come to Wyoming for the salary increase [Melea VanOstrand, "Wyoming Schools Recruit Teachers from South Dakota," KOTA-TV, 2014.08.27].

Just one school district pulls seven of South Dakota's good teachers in one year. That's brain drain isn't going to help our teacher shortage.

South Dakota's only hope for keeping teachers in the nation's teacher-pay gutter is stiff competition:

South Dakota teachers made up 38 percent of out-of-state applicants but the district only hired 2 percent of them. The district hired a total of 74 new staff members [VanOstrand, 2014.08.27].

The lesson for South Dakota: pay good money, and you can afford to be choosy about your teachers.