TULSA, Okla. — A University of Oklahoma researcher has found that teachers who have left Oklahoma earned an average of $19,000 more as teachers in other states.

The Tulsa World reports that more than 250 former Oklahoma teachers responded to the online survey that asked why they left and how much the pay difference was. Respondents reported they are collectively making $4.5 million more in their new state than they did in Oklahoma.

The survey was conducted by associate professor Theresa Cullen of the OU College of Education and was largely conducted through social media.

Oklahoma Employment Security Commission statistics show that in the first three months of 2016, a total of 440 people employed in the K-12 and higher education economic sector left the state for a job in a neighboring state.

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