Via Yahoo Finance: More than half of U.S. teachers are considering leaving the profession: Survey

Can we get the politics out of the classroom?

–Randi Weingarten

My wife is a teacher, she applied for an online teaching job this year. She wants out of the brick and mortar schools. And it isn’t the money. Nor is it ungrounded fear of “school shootings”. It is violence within the schools.

For the last school year they have had two or three students that have controlled the school. These are kids that refused to stay in class. Refused to obey instructions. Threw things, broke things, vandalized classroom, attacked and teachers. One teacher had her arm broken by one of these children. (Grades k-5).

All the teachers are tired of the alert messages that tell them that the good students have to be held inside their classrooms because the animals have taken over part of the school again. (For the liberal bleeding hearts, race doesn’t come into this question.)

But according to Yahoo it is that teachers don’t get paid enough.

But the real reason that teachers are thinking of leaving the profession is:

“What [teachers] really want is they want us to do the common sense gun safety precautions that are being talked about in Washington right now, that Governor Hochul did in New York state with the legislature just a few days ago, that GOP Governor Baker did in Massachusetts a few years ago, what the overwhelming number of Americans — Republican, Democrat, Independent — want us to do: They want something done,” Weingarten said.

Weingarten said this while trying to get politics out of the classroom. Maybe she should keep politics out of the classroom too?

Yes, there are teachers in the local school system that are terrified of school shootings, but hardening the schools with armed guards is not acceptable. It will frighten the children. I don’t understand how that is more frightening than doing lock down drills.

Evaluating Teacher Pay

If some teacher or teacher’s representative tells you they don’t get paid enough, make sure you do the actual math. You need to know the teachers salary, the value of the benefits package and the number of contract hours. A nominal contract is for 185 days per year.

So compare a teacher making $50,000/year and a nurse making $50,000/year. Ignoring benefits.

The nurse makes $24.03/hour. The teacher makes $33.78/hour. If the teacher worked full time, year round like other employees, then they would be making the same $24.03/hour. The difference between being paid $50k/2080hrs and $50k/1480hrs

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By awa

8 thoughts on “Teachers Are Leaving The Profession”
  1. I hate how, from the time a student enters college to the time they graduate, teacher’s salaries dropped so low.

    Surely no one told them that teacher pay is low until they entered the job market.

  2. Yeah nothing to do w/ nightmare kids, parents, and administrators. It’s ‘guns’. Nothing to do w/ endless standardized tests or flavor of the month ‘new teaching methods’. It’s guns.

  3. Teacher pay is the red herring of the school budget discussion. To date, I have yet to live in a community that did not constantly increase the school budget by a relatively large percent every year, but only trickle up the teacher salaries by a small fraction of that percent. (School budget goes up 10%. Teacher salary goes up 0.5%. Using numbers I pulled out of the air as an example.)
    .
    So, where does all that increase in budget go??? (Hint: How many vice principals does a school need?)
    .
    When teachers see the Administrations salaries go up, and the number of administrative personnel increase, while they have to deal with all the issues, no wonder they are leaving. In my community, I see massive increases in school budgets, but no more teachers, and their salaries are no where in line with the increase in overall school budget.

    1. In IL, ~50% of school budgets outside of Chicago goes to union mandated pensions. One of the more popular tricks is to take admin classes, Get promoted to a VP the last year or so, for a lifetime pay bump. Some districts have responded by pushing for local sales tax increases to cover building maint. etc.

    2. Good point. My high school (in Holland, in the 1970s) had roughly 40 teachers, a principal, a secretary, a custodian and his assistant, and two part time janitors. That’s it. The senior math teacher doubled as assistant principal. Top notch school (that’s in the Dutch system with 6 years after elementary school, a whole pile of topics aimed to get you into a university. Math, physics, a bunch of foreign languages, etc…
      So 12% overhead (counting the two janitors as one full time person). In money terms, most likely under 10%.

    1. As they say “He was well known to the school system.” In a state where it is almost impossible to fire a teacher I’m credited with getting one principal fired and five teachers. I’m the guy that shows up at the school board every two weeks and says “You’ve got a bad apple. What are you going to do about it?”

      As for touching my wife, yeah they don’t. Some kids were bullying my son. I’ve got the school superintendent and the head of the State Department of Education on speed dial.

      My favorite quote was from Head of DoE when I called about an issue where the local school system wasn’t following the law. This is on a Friday near enough to 1800 to make no difference. “I’m going to call [superintendent] and unguideline him.” he said. Two hours later I got a polite email from superintendent with a “yes, we are going to do it the way you told us to do it.”

      It is amazing what putting the right names on E-Mail CC: lists can do to unblock bureaucratic nonsense.

  4. A couple of thoughts here. It’s odd that you decided to compare teachers to nurses, because I left teaching to become a nurse. That makes me qualified to do a bit of an apples to apples comparison. First is pay and working hours:
    I retired from the Fire Department and became a teacher. Starting pay for a teacher in this area of Florida was $36K a year in 2014, but is now a bit higher. When I left teaching, I had 7 years’ experience and was making $45K. (I didn’t get raises, I changed school districts) Students attend school 180 days a year, and my teacher contract was 195 days. My wife, who is still a teacher, has a 200 day contract. What they don’t tell you is that there are days that you are required to be at work that aren’t on your contract. For example, high school teachers have to attend graduation, but it isn’t a contracted day. Likewise for open house, parent conferences, etc. The other thing to think about is that other jobs like nursing end when you go home. Teachers often plan and grade papers outside of working hours. Still, I am required to be at school from 0730 to 1600. There is no time off for lunch. There is no time and a half if you work more than 40 hours in a week.

    As a nurse, I get pay that is outside of my salary. For example, if you are a full time nurse, you work three 12 hour sifts a week, and if you are PRN, you are required to work 4 days a month, and all nurses get a bonus for every day you work more than that. That bonus in this area is currently $900 a day.

    So lets compare a nurse to a teacher. A teacher works 1,660 hours even without counting extras like graduation, conferences, and grading papers, making $45k. That works out to $27.11 an hour. At the hospital, I am making more than $30 an hour, and I get overtime for hours over 40, plus those large bonuses. With all of that, I wound up making about $70k last year at the hospital.

    I left teaching, but it wasn’t because of the pay. I was attacked in my classroom by a student in 2016. I constantly had to deal with parents and students trying to get me fired, administrators who push you to lower standards and won’t support you when you try to discipline students, won’t discipline students for being truant, then demand to know why your students don’t do well on standardized testing. It’s a thankless job that makes you feel like it is you versus the students, parents, and administrators.

    Just like society in general, there are conservative teachers and there are liberal teachers. One teacher at my last school was a gun owning retired MMA fighter. There were retired cops, a former engineer with Bell labs, and we used to get together on weekends and go to the range. I have heard that elementary school, being nearly all women, are fairly liberal.

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