Letters to the Editor

Salary gap

March 19, 2008


To the editor:

I agree wholeheartedly with Randy Weseman about Lawrence having a "quality-of-life issue that appeals to people." Lawrence is a wonderful place to live. I do take exception, however, to Weseman justifying Lawrence's incredibly low teacher salaries (73rd in the state, according a recent article in the Journal-World) with a quality-of-life argument, while last year's 5 percent raise brought his salary to the 12th highest in the state for superintendents (www.ksde.org/Default.aspx?tabid=1869). Weseman's position allows him to have both the wonderful quality of life in Lawrence, and the salary to help pay for the exorbitant housing costs in our town. Don't Lawrence's teachers deserve the same?

Scott Sharp,


KsTwister 9 years, 9 months ago

The school board always points to teachers salaries before a tax increase and then they never give them one. Voters are finally getting wise to this one Weseman. Very wise. NO

mom_of_three 9 years, 9 months ago

You have to have the education to be a well-paid teacher. But it's the same for any job. Teachers also have loans to pay and the same expenses as the rest of us.
They deserve a pay raise every year, as each of us does.
I don't begrudge the teachers a raise, but a closer look should be taken at the administration.

j4708 9 years, 9 months ago

To me, the question is why can't the Lawrence School District be competitive on teacher wages? All Kansas districts get their funding from the state and a local option. Lawrence has maximized their local option and is trying to continue to do so. Why then can they not be as competitive? The administration and school board need to be more forthcoming with information and reflection on their current operations. What are we spending more of the pie on rather than teacher wages when compared to other districts?

Eric Neuteboom 9 years, 9 months ago

Don't envy my position! I'm married to a teacher, AND I'm a home owner! Can I just give my wife an extra 20 bucks and call it good?

SettingTheRecordStraight 9 years, 9 months ago

Reduce administrative waste by requiring government schools to put no less than 80% of taxpayer dollars into the classroom.

Then give American families real educatio options by offering school choice. This would allow currently-allocated per-pupil dollars to follow any student to any accredited school in Kansas.

Then get rid of the wasteful US Department of Education and put the education of our children back into the hands of communities - not Washington, DC bureaucrats.

person184 9 years, 9 months ago

If the bond doesn't pass, they will eliminate ALL of the WRAP social work positions, instead of just the elementary positions.

gccs14r 9 years, 9 months ago

Yes, because god forbid there should be some culling of redundant administrative staff....

deskboy04 9 years, 9 months ago

The food service director makes almost $90,000 a year.

Richard Heckler 9 years, 9 months ago

The city and county commissions raise taxes frequently yet very little is said. Taxpayers do not get to vote on these Chamber led tax increases. It is the city and county commissioners who create the need to increase taxes by creating new neighborhoods which bring more students thus more expenses and more work for USD 497. If you do not like increased expenses take it to the commissoners.

Teachers deserve more pay for all of the hard work. One could say to those who don't like teacher salaries should be the ones to migrate elsewhere . We need teachers.

Anyone who works hard for many years deserves good pay. It keeps them off of social services.

For all of those who own rental properties you knew what you were getting into.

The killer on this will be the variety of tax increases created by our commissioners with new housing and developments aka not fiscally responsible. Very few complain hmmmmm.

ForThePeople 9 years, 9 months ago

It is too bad that the teachers will not benefit from the proposed tax increase. If the school board really cared, they would not have such a luxurious building for administration. Move the admin into the empty school on Louisana and stop paying exorbitant amounts to house admin where they are currently located.

talmansrock 9 years, 9 months ago

Lawrence is a bit pricey for what you get. For some of the rent in this town you could easily have a mortgage that is lower. Great little town, but high rent and taxes for a town with few jobs. Most of the jobs that aren't administrative or in manufacturing pay under 8 bucks an hour, even more under 7. It's sad to see people rejoice for ten bucks an hour. In my old hometown of St. Joseph the guy sweeping the floor makes about 13-14 an hour to start, and the housing to buy and rent is probably 20-30% cheaper for the same thing. 250 grand for a 2 inch thick, built in a week, 2 bedroom, 10 square ft of sunscored lawn with no trees, beige house? Lets get real.

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