Tuesday, September 28, 2010

State of Education Part 3: Why Teachers Should Get Paid More

The average person entering into a profession after acquiring a bachelors degree in 2009 begins at 50,000 dollars a year.

The average beginning teacher entering into their profession after acquiring a bachelors degree in 2009 is 28,000 a year.

"But teachers get three months off of vacation! They should get paid less"

Lets break it down:

At 50k that is 4,100 a month
At 28k that is 2,300 a month

That means that if summer break is the only factor teachers should start at 3,700 a year.

"But teachers only teach from like 8:30-3:00, those are short hours."

True, teachers in Clark County are only contractually obligated from about 8:00-3:30...but ask me how many teachers do that...there is no overtime for teachers and the average teacher I've known/worked with are at school between 8-11 hours a day, not to mention the at home hours they put in grading, preparing, studying, and receiving continuing education.

All the things I've already stated is true, however--none of those are reasons why teachers should get paid more...here is the reason why:

If doctors started their careers by making 30,000 a year, who would be attracted to the field of medicine? Would the best, brightest, most talented? No, because people understand that when you begin a career, you need to start one that is lucrative, that can provide financially for your needs. Think of how many teachers you know personally. How many of them have families and support their families on their teacher's income? I know 2 families. Us, and a friend, who's husband recently lost his job--so they don't really count. The rest of them are two income families with teaching being the secondary income.

So if you bumped up teachers salaries, more people might follow their passion and want to become teachers. More people would work harder to become so. The field would be more competitive, only the best would get teaching jobs, and children would have a wider variety of talent in teachers--thus improving education in America.

Fortunately for us, Adam has a lot of education so he does get paid more than the average teacher--but it is a thankless profession (I talked earlier about how Adam has the highest test scores in his school--yet he received no recognition, no raise, no praise.

1 comment:

Melinda said...

Very true. With common vocabulary of the day, you could also say that teachers receive a 3 month furlough every year. Sure our salaries are stretched out over those 3 months, but we are unable to work in our vocation during those months because our job doesn't exist. At least at some year round districts a teacher could substitute on their off track to supplement income, but that is not the norm in our country. Teaching is getting harder to get into-with all the extra tests and qualifications necessary to be certified (and all cost personal money) with no guarantee that they will receive any monetary gain in response to shelling out all the money and effort to become highly qualified. Some people argue that ok, you've got a point, so maybe Doctor's should get paid less. Which I disagree with-because yes, like most teachers, we will do so because we love it, but you will also get a good many who are just going to a job. Also, my income as a full time teacher is not enough for us to live off of. And we have essentially no credit card debt. Just a car payment and a mortgage of $411/month so we're not living extravagantly by any means! We are having to pull extra student loans to make ends meet. It might have been enough if I hadn't been frozen the last two years and not able to move up in experience or over in credits (which I worked hard to do!) and had my extra duty cut.