Wednesday, August 16, 2023

That "Turnover Teacher" Story of Yesterday?

Just as we suspected, that 'turnover teacher' story that ran in yesterday's Birdcage Liner is part of a larger scheme to fleece taxpayers of Mo'Money!!

You hear it all the time. Teachers are underpaid. There is a teacher pay penalty. Teachers are the lowest paid of all the professions. Recently, the National Education Association issued a report claiming, “Teacher Salaries Not Keeping Up With Inflation.The Guardian asserts that teachers “can’t afford rent.  The feds may soon be joining the party. America’s shrill socialist Senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders, has introduced the Pay Teachers Act, a gambit that would cost taxpayers $450 billion over 10 years....

Gee.  Bernie Sanders.  We are SHOCKED, I say.

Rather than going through the dreary details of what Bernie proposed, let's look at what teachers already get.  (It's a lot.) 

...In the 2020–21 school year, the average U.S. school teacher made $65,090 yearly in salary and received another $33,048 in benefits (health insurance, paid leave, and pensions) for a total compensation of $98,138, according to Just Facts.

full-time public school teachers work an average of 1,490 hours per year, including time spent on lesson preparation, test construction, and grading, providing extra help to students, coaching, and other activities, while private industry employees work an average of 2,045 hours per year, or about 37% more than public school teachers.

All in all, with various weighty perks like healthcare and pension plans included, a teacher makes $68.85 an hour on average, whereas a private sector worker makes about $36 per hour....

Yes, "average" includes both New York City and East Noplace, N.D.--so it's a good bet that the East Noplace teachers are not 'at average.'


Toting up those "total compensation" numbers--when only about one-third of Wisconsin students can read at grade-level proficiency (it's less for math)-- it's likely that the teachers are being paid on a very steep curve.

Teachers, like everyone else, will turn over in their slots.  It's not a crisis, no matter what Little Local Pravda would like you to believe.  And it is most certainly NOT due to under-compensation!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Librarians are a big part of the problem too!

When a Librarian Throws Books in the Trash

August 31, 2023


Thank you for that article on libraries by Alan. He is such a talented writer and astute observer of society.

I have wo in libraries for twenty-five years, and agree that the field is no longer run by “grown-ups”. I have fond memories of the librarians of yore, but the people entering the field are now activists, much like teachers. The sole place I have encountered “pronouns” in my rural area is in e-mails from fellow library directors. These are frequently sent to rally others to fight “censorship”, the censorship of sexually explicit materials from the children’s section. I have asked to be removed from these partisan e-mail lists, and now my fellow directors do not return my calls.

I cannot begin to describe the drivel that I am being sent to add to the collection. Books for children these days are ugly, with illustrations that are primitive and devoid of artistic talent. They have overt, preachy messages. These serve in complete contrast to the books I enjoyed as a child like The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and Frog and Toad are Friends. I can visualize the illustrations from memory of The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery and Gareth Williams’ drawings in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books. Homeschooling families are the bedrock of my circulation numbers, but when I try to buy the classics they request, my state board tells me these books are “too old”, and I cannot purchase any books using state funds with a copyright that exceeds seven years. Why is this, I wonder?

Adult literature these days tends to feature graphically descriptive violence and sexuality that ambushes you without warning as you read a book. Disturbing topics like child sexual abuse are found more often in adult fiction that is meant to titillate and entertain. The Young Adult section is to be avoided altogether. My teenage daughter refers to it as the “vampire lesbian section”!

As Alan mentioned, libraries are fighting to be “relevant”, and that is why they are transitioning to entertainment and events. They rely on public funds and want to be perceived as valuable to the community. This is a valid concern, as people simply do not read as much as they used to, and even parents do not take their children to the library with the frequency I enjoyed as a small child. The culture has shifted. My own library was a ghost town before I took over.

The Bible warns against despair. There is always something we can do to “put on the armor of God”. As a library director I have the ability to throw non-suitable books literally in the trash and this is oh-so-rewarding. I can invite wonderful guest speakers. I can select children’s books that honor goodness and use public funds to do so. But you don’t have to be a branch director to improve your library. Maybe that smutty book in the youth section needs to be accidentally re-shelved in the adult section near the dusty old cookbooks. Maybe your state has a mechanism where you can request certain books be evaluated for age level appropriateness. Many states are going this route now. Or maybe you can plan an event to meet at your library that is more wholesome. Some friends are starting lending libraries in their homes to retain physical copies of beloved books as authors are being “cancelled” from the public sphere. I recently worked in a school library in Canada, where the powers that be removed all the Little House on the Prairie books because of their (honest) portrayal of Indians. The activists sure are busy, but are we?