The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development has put out a table comparing teacher pay to GDP in a number of countries. Imperfect as it might be, I think it says something about the priority that teacher pay receives in these countries. In any case, the US does not show up well, which is not surprising since "education" is not highly valued here, despite the lip service it receives.
Notice that Finland, cited as a "top performing nation," is not far above the US. Still, Finnish teachers probably receive far more benefits (health care, education, retirement, etc.) than US teachers do.
[Thanks to PZ Myers at Pharyngula for linking to this table, which is posted here.