In response to the post, “Yes, I Know the Hours are Long,” a teacher writes: I do not mind giving my time because it is the right thing to do. But I feel demanding hours without paying people is unjust. How will we ever get the bright and the best to teach? Is satisfaction from helping children enough to let your own families suffer? I want it all the best of everything. SC Response
Good comment. I do recognize that the discussion of hours is more personal to teachers than other professionals in our field. Additionally, there is no question that teachers do the majority of the heavy lifting in education. I will not say that they are the lowest paid, because that is not always the case. As a young AP, there were a number of teachers on my campus that were paid more than me. As a young principal, there were teachers and AP’s that made more than me. But, as professional educators, we are not hourly employees. We essentially agree that for a set amount of money, we will complete a job to the satisfaction of those paying us. Unfortunately, there are two external factors that make this arrangement feel more and more unfair. 1. Teachers are paid essentially the same. Yet all teachers do not work in equally difficult settings and all teachers are not equally effective. 2. We continue to vote for politicians that demand increased services from schools without making corresponding investments in those same schools. If you are one of the best and the brightest, at some level, you recognize this and you make one of two decisions. Either avoid the profession, or assign significant value to the intrinsic rewards the profession provides. As an advocate for public education, I work everyday to improve what we do. I work to make systems more efficient and people more effective and I vote for those who are willing to invest in schools (a difficult task this past election). By doing so, I hope make the profession more appealing and rewarding. Think. Work. Achieve.Your turn…

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