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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 04:24 PM   #81
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Outsourcing of teaching was mentioned above in the context of a threat against the union corrupted teachers. Maybe I am an idealist but I see the teachers in our town as an important part of the social fabric. We have good property values because we have good schools. The good schools depend in large part upon attracting dedicated, hardworking folk who are good with the kids and know their subject. In our community, a bad teacher would not last long. The administrators know it is too important to the community to keep up the quality. Quality seems to be contagious. I feel good about contributing to ur local schools because I can see the result of the investment and have an influence on it. What pisses me off is sending money to the federal rathole where it is pissed away on no bid contracts.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 05:01 PM   #82
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet
I did a little research........ The mystery of the large raises (ball park 20%) in the data base is indeed because these particular teachers were in last three years before retirement.
That seems to border on fraud. I'm still surprised there are no investigative reporters having fun with that one. The ethics phrase at the Federal government was always, "think of how it would look on the front page of the Washington Post." I would expect a few principals would get hooted out of town if the local paper headlined the fact that they jacked up ending salaries 20%/year to give their buds a lifetime of significantly larger pension
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 06:13 PM   #83
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
That seems to border on fraud. I'm still surprised there are no investigative reporters having fun with that one. The ethics phrase at the Federal government was always, "think of how it would look on the front page of the Washington Post." I would expect a few principals would get hooted out of town if the local paper headlined the fact that they jacked up ending salaries 20%/year to give their buds a lifetime of significantly larger pension
No, no........ This wasn't something being done under the table or at the discretion of the principals. In the case of teachers, it was part of a program to buy out senior teachers and have them retire early. You had to announce your retirement irrevocably three years prior, then you got these hefty raises in lieu of the smaller raises non-retiring teachers got. You also had to make extra payments to TRS (teacher's retirement system). It was a good deal and many teachers took advantage of it.

For administrators, it was less formal and seemed to be at the discretion of the school board and was usually written into their employment contract.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 06:23 PM   #84
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by windsurf
Outsourcing of teaching was mentioned above in the context of a threat against the union corrupted teachers.
No 'threat' intended. Just an explanation of how the global community now works. There are plenty of examples over the past 20 years of groups that thought it could not happen to them. People are going to Singapore for medical operations these days.

Quote:
In our community, a bad teacher would not last long.
That is good and as it should be. Trouble is, in many communities, tenure and other forces make it so hard to fire a bad teacher, that they just don't bother. That does not help the quality of schools.

May I ask - what makes your community different? We need more of that.

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What pisses me off is sending money to the federal rathole where it is pissed away on no bid contracts.
No argument from me!

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 06:31 PM   #85
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?


Disclaimer: I teach 4th grade in California, and make 45772, in my third year. BA in Music. MA in Multicultural Ed.

I think we all agree that tenure is bunk, and that unions protect some bad teachers. We can all argue about who is worth what. Athletes, too much...garbage collectors, too little. Who cares?!? Unions or not, market inefficiency, whatever, the market does determine the wage.

Yes, I enjoy my summer. No, I don't get three months paid vacation, I get paid for 9 months and take 3 months unpaid vacation. Look at it however you want to. I chose to teach, in part, in order to have a career, AND have more time home for family. It's a good "second" career for my family...and that's a value decision. I'm sure it's a good "first and only" career for many single parents. FWIW, I used to work in the record business making $75/hour, working 100 hours per week. Mindless, but well compensated. From my limited anecdotal evidence, most teachers I know did not consider compensation as a major factor in choosing education as a career.

This job is way more satisfying than any paycheck could be. I do get terrific benefits. I get to play guitar for kids everyday and write goofy songs about rounding decimals. I get to see their faces fill with pride when their parents see their work for the first time. Oh, yeah, thanks for the pension...that's good too. Who wouldn't want to teach? That's right...you're here too.

Could I do it for less? Yes. Would I do it for less? Yes. I love it. But I don't have to. I was one of 13 people hired the year I was hired. 13 out of over 4000 apps. To some degree the market is working. I think you guys have some numbers a little mushy, at least for my area. Our scale for teachers tops out just over 73k with masters degree (1100 stipend btw).

Here are my numbers:
185 days - 10 (sick leave) = 175
6.5 hours/school day (don't worry, I'll grade the papers at home...I know I'm paid for it)
1137.5 hours/ school year
32 students
$45772
That works out to just south of $1.26 per hour per child.

What do you pay for child care?

And, at least in my room, you're getting way more than child care!

I guess to me the question is not who is worth what, but, what is your child's education worth? Do you think 1.26/hour/student is sufficient? If so, that's your prerogative. I think otherwise. I do think that it is clear that the best qualified and most gifted educators often choose the private sector. What does that say about the pay of eduators? IMHO, when the best and the brightest from MIT, Harvard and so on are choosing public education as a a career, then you're getting close to overpaying them. Until then, our priorities are out of whack.

Education is an easy target. When you ask for a raise in the private sector, you ask your boss, who evaluates your work, and determines your worth to the company. You don't broadcast it to the world and ask them for support. Unfortuantly, contract negotiations, and public approval is how teachers must go about asking. More troubling is that the voting populous, statistically has not set foot in a classroom in decades. I'd ask only this. Before you bash the schools, teachers, administrators, school boards, or the system...walk in the door. Observe. Take part in the process. I do know a couple of bad teachers. But I don't know one who isn't working everyday in the best interest of children. What's that worth?

I'll take my week at Thanksgiving, thank you! Happy holidays!
devo

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 06:32 PM   #86
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
There is something strange going on here. This person can't be a regular teacher. Are you sure the "teacher" didn't become an administrator? If this is just a teacher, where are the newspaper stories?
It was 'just a teacher'... it listed him as such with I believe 32 or 33 years service... I did see administrators with much less years making less...
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 07:23 PM   #87
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud
It was 'just a teacher'... it listed him as such with I believe 32 or 33 years service... I did see administrators with much less years making less...
Texas Proud - I explained the reason for the high ending salary and large raises in a post a few above this.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 08:24 PM   #88
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by devo
Disclaimer: I teach 4th grade in California, and make 45772, in my third year. BA in Music. MA in Multicultural Ed.
devo: Thanks for this reasoned and thoughtful view 'from the trenches'. I'm glad to see someone can discuss this without dragging too much emotional baggage and protectionism into it.

Quote:
I think we all agree that tenure is bunk, and that unions protect some bad teachers.
What I don't understand is why the teachers themselves don't rebel against this? The vast majority of teachers are not bad - why do they want the few bad apples protected? It just brings down the whole group. Seems just the opposite of what dedicated professionals would want.

Quote:
No, I don't get three months paid vacation, I get paid for 9 months and take 3 months unpaid vacation. Look at it however you want to.
Agreed. The only problem I have is when a teacher tries to compare their 9 month salary with a private sector 11 month salary with no adjustment.

Quote:
I was one of 13 people hired the year I was hired. 13 out of over 4000 apps. To some degree the market is working.
I'm not sure I agree on this, but I don't really have enough data. Assume a large percentage (say 80%) of the applicants were not (or marginally) qualified. That still leaves 800 applicants for 13 positions. Although I am not taking a position on whether anyone is paid fairly or not, that sounds to me like an awful lot of people think that is sweet compensation for the work, or they'd look elsewhere.

Quote:
That works out to just south of $1.26 per hour per child.

What do you pay for child care?
That is an interesting perspective. This is some nitpicking, but the taxpayers are paying the salary *plus* the cost of benefits, plus another ~25% or so for other costs. And most class sizes are smaller (our music classes are easily that large though) - but yes, it does still seem pretty 'cheap' on a per hour basis. Day-care (a least from what I remember) do not have 32 kids per adult, and they need to make a profit and pay taxes.

That still does not change the argument that people should be paid what the free market determines, and that taxpayers should get the most value for their buck.

Quote:
I do think that it is clear that the best qualified and most gifted educators often choose the private sector. What does that say about the pay of educators?
There could be many reasons. Maybe the same reasons that some of the best/brightest in the private sector become entrepreneurs? Give up the 'security' for a chance at the big time? Or, just maybe, the best/brightest do get fed up with the protectionism, and want the chance to shine?

Enjoy your Thanksgiving!

-ERD50

PS - how come there isn't any Thanksgiving 'Holiday Music' ??

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 10:54 PM   #89
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
What I don't understand is why the teachers themselves don't rebel against this? The vast majority of teachers are not bad - why do they want the few bad apples protected? It just brings down the whole group. Seems just the opposite of what dedicated professionals would want.
Again, I'm not big on the tenure thing, however, the only argument that makes sense to me in anyway, relates to the limited employers available. Tenure protects me from the one nutjob boss. As you may understand, the state seems to have more than it's share of off-kilter folks. If for some reason a superior of mine and I clash, and s/he lets me go, I'm outta luck. I've just been blacklisted (unhireable) in several states for the rest of my career. I'm now knee deep into five years of school and potentially tens of thousands in school loans for an education that I can't use anymore (professionally speaking). I think you make the point that the "vast majority" are not bad. I'd argue that the vast majority are thougthful, professional, hard working and so on, but as a group, I think teachers are willing to submit to this "problem few" in order to maintain the laundry list of other protections that unions and tenure allow. As a male teacher of young children, I would not consider, for a moment, stepping into the classroom without the protection of the union. You'd be amazed...Children of this age love to hug their teachers. I quickly turn to the side, and hug them with my hip and only touch thier shoulder. I never have a student in my room alone. I open both doors when I have a small group. I take no chances. Call it paranoid...I call it careful. I work with the public everyday. More than that, I work with their kids. What's more important than your kids. I respect that.

Quote:
Or, just maybe, the best/brightest do get fed up with the protectionism, and want the chance to shine?
If when referring to the best/brightest, you mean Bill Gates and the miniscule handfull that make billions, then I'd agree with you, but you can't tell me that the lions share of these grads aren't choosing private, "secure," cube jobs with great benefits over public education. They're trading 40k and 3 months for 90k and 2 weeks. Again, a value judgement, I agree. My issue is with the "masses" pounding the drum that education is the public's priority, slighting the quality, while saying out of the other side of their mouths that teachers are overpaid. Here's your free market again. If you really wanted the best you'd wrestle those EE majors away from inventing ipods at apple and into the classroom where'd they'd impact young generations. If you want them...you'll have to pay! Apple does. Until then you've got me. By the way...trust me, if my income was our primary, based on our current lifestyle, I wouldn't last at this either. In my family, my career is considered a luxury. I can do this because my wife makes enough to support the life we want to live.

You guys may be in the minority, I certainly won't speak for you, but I think many people do feel that teachers are underpaid. I get it all of the time.

"What do you do?"

"I teach school."

"Wow, that's great...how noble?"

As if I've joined the cloth. People look at teaching as a sort of charity work.

I guess my gut feeling about most teachers that I know is that they chose teaching in spite of the pay rather than because of it. In the end I guess you can argue that teachers are overpaid if you want. I'd just ask that you start with pro athletes, politicians, doctors, lawyers, financial advisors , lobbyists, CFOs, CEOs, World Poker champions, drug dealers, etc. When you get to me, leave a message, I'll be trying to teach reduction of fractions to kids who don't know their math facts, because their families don't value their kids education as much as I do. Run on...

devo

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-07-2006, 11:23 PM   #90
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet
Texas Proud - I explained the reason for the high ending salary and large raises in a post a few above this.
Yes... but I was way behind on reading......

Also,... from what you were saying... WHAT What a waste of taxpayer money to give them a 20% increase etc for a few years to increase their retirement for the rest of thier lives!!! Did they 'earn' it NOT...

And then they talk about how much more tax money they need to educate our children.... and need more and more... but 'waste' it on retirement benefits not earned...

And don't give me the bull about not knowing about teachers... my Mom was one and my oldest sister taught 38 years... I told her about the increase and she was floored... couldn't believe they would do that...
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 12:09 AM   #91
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Funny noone defending teachers talks about health care benefit, in Wisconsin the teachers union waves it around as a scared cow to worship. I think the teachers in our district pay a whopping $25 a month for FAMILY coverage.............

That helps makes up some of the difference when the average folk is paying $350-$500 a month for the same coverage, no

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 12:12 AM   #92
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Proud
Yes... but I was way behind on reading......
So, you want me to pop for your Evelyn Woods Reading Dynamics course?
Quote:

Also,... from what you were saying... WHAT What a waste of taxpayer money to give them a 20% increase etc for a few years to increase their retirement for the rest of thier lives!!! Did they 'earn' it NOT...
Please note, I wasn't justifying it, I was just explaining why you saw the close to 20% raises going on for the high seniority, end of career folks.
Quote:

And don't give me the bull about not knowing about teachers... my Mom was one and my oldest sister taught 38 years... I told her about the increase and she was floored... couldn't believe they would do that...
Easy big guy........ I was just splaining where the numbers came from. I found the fact that they would do that kind of amazing myself.

The prior deal to encourage teachers to retire was to add years of age and seniority when calculating their pensions. Last time it was 5 + 5, also a very sweet deal. If you were 55 and had 30 years of service, they used 60 yo and 35 years of service in the pension calculation.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 12:18 AM   #93
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FinanceDude
Funny noone defending teachers talks about health care benefit, in Wisconsin the teachers union waves it around as a scared cow to worship. I think the teachers in our district pay a whopping $25 a month for FAMILY coverage.............

That helps makes up some of the difference when the average folk is paying $350-$500 a month for the same coverage, no

The teachers' share for hospitalization costs varies widely from district to district and state to state, just like their pay levels. Sounds like the teachers in your school district have an attractive situation in that regard.

Anyway, isn't Wisconsin planning on seizing all private property and redistributing it to school boards? Hee hee.....just kidding. But I do get a kick out of seeing signs identifying forest land as belonging to the local school district when I'm in northern Wisconsin. Apparently, in the past land was deeded over to school districts as one way for them to get funding.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 04:47 AM   #94
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FinanceDude
in Wisconsin the teachers union waves it around as a scared cow to worship.

I understand why the cows are "scared". Many end up as hamburger.
But why worship them? Does someone think they are capable of bovination? I'm on the horns of a dilemma.

JG
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 05:04 AM   #95
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by devo
Run on...

devo

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 05:24 AM   #96
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by windsurf
What pisses me off is sending money to the federal rathole where it is pissed away on no bid contracts.
Doesn't matter. They would waste it anyway. I am happy for Haliburton
to have the $ (after the feds get it away from me).

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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 06:54 AM   #97
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by devo
As a male teacher of young children, I would not consider, for a moment, stepping into the classroom without the protection of the union. You'd be amazed...Children of this age love to hug their teachers. I quickly turn to the side, and hug them with my hip and only touch thier shoulder. I never have a student in my room alone. I open both doors when I have a small group. I take no chances. Call it paranoid...I call it careful. I work with the public everyday. More than that, I work with their kids. What's more important than your kids. I respect that.
I taught grammar school for a year back in 1972 before that really became a big issue (at least where I was). Half the year I was a sub. A lot of the younger kids did like to give you a hug, especially when I handled a special ed class for a brief period. It never crossed my mind to worry about hugging them back - but it would now. I would be very reluctant to work with kids in any environment that didn't have other adults present. It is a shame that needs to be the case, but I don't think there is any way to go back to a looser style.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 07:08 AM   #98
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by donheff
I taught grammar school for a year back in 1972 before that really became a big issue (at least where I was). Half the year I was a sub. A lot of the younger kids did like to give you a hug, especially when I handled a special ed class for a brief period. It never crossed my mind to worry about hugging them back - but it would now. I would be very reluctant to work with kids in any environment that didn't have other adults present. It is a shame that needs to be the case, but I don't think there is any way to go back to a looser style.
It's sad that has to be number one on our list of concerns. When I was dealing with people who lost loved ones, I normally came off as cold, because of all of the lawsuits. Touch is a very powerful communicator and the sicko's who have perverted it to the point where a child who needs a hug can't get one or the young teenager who needs someone to put their arm on their shoulder for support can't get one, needs to be shot several times. Their crimes harm more than the victim it harms all of society.
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 07:18 AM   #99
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet
So, you want me to pop for your Evelyn Woods Reading Dynamics course? Please note, I wasn't justifying it, I was just explaining why you saw the close to 20% raises going on for the high seniority, end of career folks.
Easy big guy........ I was just splaining where the numbers came from. I found the fact that they would do that kind of amazing myself.

The prior deal to encourage teachers to retire was to add years of age and seniority when calculating their pensions. Last time it was 5 + 5, also a very sweet deal. If you were 55 and had 30 years of service, they used 60 yo and 35 years of service in the pension calculation.
Youbet... none of my 'rant' was directed at you.... sorry you thought so..

Any why encourage teachers to retire So they get the 'high' salary off the school district's books and onto the pension plan... and the district does not have to even pay for all this extra pension benefits... sweeeeettttt

Yet they are talkihng about the upcoming teacher shortage and how they will have to 'pay extra' to keep some teachers that want to retire teaching... it hasn't happened yet, but I have heard the talk...
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?
Old 11-08-2006, 08:29 AM   #100
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Re: What is a Moderate Income?

Considering everything people have mentioned here, teachers are still underpaid in my opinion.

These people are giving knowledge to our children. They CARE for them while the kids are in school. And the good ones leave an impression on the kids sometimes strong enough to shape their imagination.

Now, that type of work is far more important to me than a system administrator, or a CPA's work. The Chicago area may also have a higher rate of pay than most teachers, anyone have national averages?

Yes, there are bad teachers, but that is not the norm and the good ones far outweigh the impact of the bad ones in my experience.

To any teachers who are reading or have posted, for the work you do/have done THANK YOU!!
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