Advertisement

birdstone

Follow

Comment history

$1M gap stymies teacher salary talks

For the record, I know well that my wife gets 25 minutes for lunch, and no breaks during the day. I am also well aware that day care costs more than $6.75 per hour, but most day care workers don't earn much more than six bucks an hour. Justanotherbozo raises a great point. If it were such a great job, with such great pay, why is teacher retention so low as compared to other professions? Especially taking into account that most first/second year teachers just completed 5 years of higher ed. and in class training (and all of the expenses involved) to become a teacher? Fresh hopeful idealists that want to make a difference: my advice is to not buy into the B.S. NBC "teachers make a differnce" commercials. Spend your time and energy finding a profession where you will be respected by your employers and patrons. To teachers already in the field: step beyond your weak union, take some job action, and make a difference. I know, of course, most teachers won't do this because they love their students and don't want to run the risk of doing harm to their education--a fact that the school board, state, and federal government are all very aware of.

July 24, 2007 at 9:35 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

$1M gap stymies teacher salary talks

Being the spouse of a teacher, I have first hand knowledge that teachers get paid way too much for the work they do. After all, she's only at work from 8 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon, nine months out of the year. I'm not sure why she leaves for work at 7 (for a 5 minute commute) and gets home after 6 most nights. Come to think of it, I'm not sure why exactly she brings home stacks upon stacks of papers to grade (both weekends and weeknights), or why she has been spending so much time at "school" this summer working on her classroom and planning with her fellow teachers. Rough math [8am-3pm=7 hours, -one hour for lunch break=6 hours, *5 days per week=30 hours per week, *32weeks per year = 960 hours per year (not accounting for vast amount of "vacation" time during the year teachers get) * going rate for daycare $6.75 per hour = annual salary of $6480.] Better yet, let's outsource our teachers and tap into the rapidly growing Asian and Indian labor markets. I'm guessing we could find someone to teach via the internet from afar for at least half of the $6480. In the end, all of the money the district would save in cutting salaries could go where it belongs--administration. I look forward to the day when my wife has an employer that values her skills, time, and passion for children. It's not USD497. And to all you that will say "then pack up and leave," we're working on it! Lawrence-one of the best towns in the nation-deserves better.

July 24, 2007 at 6:45 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Pool fee proposal revised

I think they should increase the price to $10 for children, that way we wouldn't have to worry about diversity in our public spaces and our fair city will be represented by the "right" sort of children at the pool. Way to go people. Let's keep working to make Lawrence Johnson County West.

July 24, 2007 at 6:29 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

School board says yes to expansion of ESL

Based on the figures contained in previous posts on this topic, if the district paid the teachers for their time (as all other employers would be legally compelled to do) at a reasonable rate of $20 per hour (not an outrageous sum considering that the average teacher has at least five years of higher education) the district would need to pay each teacher in the neighborhood of $10,000 (that's 500 hours of coursework and study time multiplied by $20 per hour) for their time to complete the training. If the district opts not to pay teachers for their time, at the rate increase of $62 per pay period a teacher would receive following his/her second year in the training, it would take in the neighborhood of 161 pay periods (or the equivalent of 13.4 years) for the teachers to recover their initial time investment. Would you accept such a business arrangement? Is that a "great opportunity" to move up the pay scale or an unfair business deal for teachers?

March 13, 2007 at 11:37 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence school board agenda

Prioress is exactly right. So, lets dedicate the resources needed to prepare for this future without expecting teachers to bear the brunt of it. Expecting teachers to "pay up front" for an investment that won't even begin to pay dividends (and meager ones at that) for 13 years is neither fair nor wise.

March 12, 2007 at 10:44 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence school board agenda

Based on the figures contained in the above posts, if the district paid the teachers for their time (as all other employers would be legally compelled to do) at a reasonable rate of $20 per hour (not an outrageous sum considering that the average teacher has at least five years of higher education) the district would need to pay each teacher in the neighborhood of $10,000 (that's 500 hours of coursework and study time multiplied by $20 per hour) for their time to complete the training. If the district opts not to pay teachers for their time, at the rate increase of $62 per pay period a teacher would receive following his/her second year in the training, it would take in the neighborhood of 161 pay periods (or the equivalent of 13.4 years) for the teachers to recover their initial time investment. Would you accept such a business arrangement? Is that a "great opportunity" to move up the pay scale or an unfair business deal for teachers?

March 11, 2007 at 10:15 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence school board agenda

Pz5g1, it's true that these courses will allow teachers to move up the salary scale, but it will take two years of coursework to receive that raise (at 3 credits per semester). The raise in pay from a bachelor's to a bachelor's plus ten credits is about $750 (before taxes). That's about $62 a paycheck. The raise in pay from a master's to a master's plus ten credits is about $900. That's $75 a paycheck. I wonder how many teachers would "willingly" forgo valuable and often scarce time with spouses and children for $62 a month (before taxes) after two years? I certainly value my precious hours with loved ones beyond that. Perhaps it's different in your household. I can't imagine that there aren't other options out there for the district to consider than asking an entire staff to get ESL endorsements. It seems fairly obvious that they aren't because this decision is financially-driven, and not shaped by any real concern for either the health of students and staff.

March 11, 2007 at 10:04 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence school board agenda

pz5g1. I agree with some of what you say, but how would you feel if your employer forced you to undergo 500 hours of training without paying you? Perhaps some would want the opportunity, but a one-size-fits-all approach seems ham-handed. What about those teachers who already hold a MA? I don't believe they would enjoy the bump up on the scale. Again, we should be asking WHY the district is interested in this certification. It is my understanding that if the district is able to certify the school as ESL certified they will get more money. If the district will benefit financially from the training, why shouldn't teachers? I love my job, but if my boss forced me to work 12 weeks without being paid, I'd find another job. That sends a terrible message to the wonderful people who dedicate thier lives to our children. IMHO.

March 11, 2007 at 7:05 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence school board agenda

I am deeply concerned about mandating that teachers either complete 15 credit hours of unpaid training or leave the school. I have extensive teaching experience at KU, and by my count committing to the successful completion of 15 credit hours would entail in the neighborhood of 240 hours of instruction (3 hours per week X 16 week semester X 5 courses) plus a min. of 3 hours per week of study time (though most experts recommend much more) for a grand total of nearly 500 hours of unpaid training. How many of us would be willing to offer our employers the equivalent of 12 full weeks of our time-without compensation-just to keep our jobs? We all should be asking why, if this poses significant challenges to teachers who are already overworked, the district would implement it? The answer, I'm guessing, can be found by following the money trail. Does the district receive more state or federal money if the school is certified as an ESL site? If so, why don't the teachers who have to sacrifice time from family and lesson planning get paid for their time?

March 11, 2007 at 5:19 p.m. ( | suggest removal )