Education is a Right that is easily compromised by teacher pay

Discussion in 'General Education' started by AlwaysAttend, Sep 2, 2017.

  1. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Perhaps you should go back and read the quote I quoted from in the quote you pulled. Wow that sounds confusing. That's not what you said in that quote. You described your school to which I replied that the point you were making was there are good public schools and dismissive of a one paragraph summary on a charter school.

    I understood you clearly.
     
  2. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Companion

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    I don't think the analogy is effective. Some small district admin might have more work, but some might have less work (less students, less parents, less problem).
     
  3. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    You are not correct. Actually that's not fair. I can't speak to one room schooling houses across the country. I know the requirements and school structures in NJ. Typically one school districts are busting at the seems. If they don't have a big enough population to fill one building, they pay to send their kids to a neighboring district. Usually for 10-15 grand a student as they pay a per pupil rate. Plus bussing of course.
     
  4. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Also, our one building districts would be K-8 or K-5 usually. I don't think we have any k-12 one building districts. Someone else might be able to chime in on that though.
     
  5. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    I think you have to look both at pay and working conditions when figuring out why there is not enough interest in going into teaching in some areas.

    I find all this talk about bonuses is really disturbing to me. Yes sometimes I know I worked more hours than other colleagues but I don't want to be looking at my work in terms of some bonus structure. I really think a system where we all get paid a decent, steady wage with clearly defined hours - no bonuses, no additional pay for science teachers - is key to making the job desirable. I love teaching in a collaborative field and I just don't think you can have both.

    I still think the major issue underlying all of this is the lack of agency unions have in certain US states. In my experience, full participation in unions with teeth = good working conditions = competitive job market.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
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  6. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Isnt longevity pay a bonus?
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Phenom

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    Wait, what? I didn't understand what you just said at all. Don't bother to clarify. Just keep arguing with everyone else. I have work to do.
     
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  8. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    Sorry AlwaysAttend, I am not following. What is longevity pay?
     
  9. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    I'd personally just say "my mistake" but we all can't be honest.
     
  10. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    We raise salaries every year in America automatically. So you move up steps on the salary guide based on years of work. We also have steps for additional degrees sometimes but I know that's not universal so I didn't bring it up.

    I think somebody from Indiana though said that isn't happening there anymore but I could have misunderstood
     
  11. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Companion

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    I am also in NJ. Again, yes and no. I know the school district where I grew up had a superintendent, a principal, and a vice principal for a single K-8 school building of 350-400 kids. I think those admin had a very reasonable workload. Again, I am not saying it is always like this. I get that some small districts may be at capacity. But you can't say that all small district admin have more work than large district admin. That type of generalizing is no good, and really strays from the discussion about charters to begin with
     
  12. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    From a technical perspective, I think that would depend on how you define a bonus. I don't see the grid as a bonus and I don't think the grid is negatively impacting people's willingness to go into the profession. I do believe that teachers with more experience bring something of enhanced value. In Canada most grids are 10-15 years in length. I think there is a huge difference between the development of a teacher who is 5 years into their career and 10 years into their career. I think that mastery is about 10-15 years so I think that's a good place to stop the grid. I don't think teachers should need 25 years to get to the top of a grid - that is really just an attempt to keep salaries low.

    But that really wasn't my point or what I was trying to share. I see bonuses as things that people earn based on a judgement that someone makes and typically are set up in such a way that not everyone can 'hit the bar.' So I don't see the grid as a bonus. I see it as a clearly defined standard that everyone has equitable access to.

    What I see as problematic in creating competition - situations where there are winners and losers: signing bonuses, situations where teachers who are new to the district get paid better than those staying with the district, evaluation structures that only allow a certain % of teachers to earn the highest salary in an environment where that structure is constantly changing.

    I'm also okay if you see grids as bonuses but I would highlight that my point is that competitive based pay structures are what I see as part of the problem.
     
  13. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    True about generalizations but theres no other way to have this specific conversation without generalizing.

    Are you thinking back to the workload they had at the time you were a child? You used the word had.

    40 kids would be at least two sections of each grade at 9 levels so that's 18 teachers. Let's throw a SPED Pre-K in and we have 19 teachers. Lets throw in special area teachers, child study team members, etc. Does 30 teachers sound fair? Lets just say 10 aides, 2 office people, and a few custodians and we are at about 45 people. Since theres 3 admin we can say they each are responsible for observing each person once. Granted some are only getting observed twice but I'm just making it simple because I'm including walk throughs in that time too.

    I think in NJ they budget for 15% of the student population for SPED costs. So we can approximate 60 SPED students all with various meetings throughout the year.

    Each grade level has meetings every week that hopefully they are getting in on twice a month, meeting regularly with data team, meeting with parents, etc.

    The admin I know in small districts end up working 6 days a week to keep up with the work load. Of course they aren't paid for the extra day. It's just needed to get the work done. That's one of the reasons the small districts are used as stepping stone jobs for people. Personally I'd rather work in a small district.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
  14. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    I agree with you, i was just asking how far you wanted to go. Bonuses are really only in place in urban districts (from what I know).

    I do know hard to staff positions can negotiate higher steps on the salary scale and that is necessary because there just aren't enough of them. You incentivize people to choose those positions by paying more. It's also a way to lure people away from the private sector.
     
  15. Always__Learning

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    I still believe that if you provide good enough working conditions: solid pay, reasonable benefits/pension, good working conditions you don't need to provide incentives. I think incentives are the sign of a sick system.
     
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  16. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Good point. Is a perfect system possible though? It requires so many different variables, all of which have limitations that can't be controlled by policy decisions alone. You can't force people to choose certain majors or certain jobs. As you point out, all you can do is set up a healthy environment and hope for the best.
     
  17. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    No you can't create a perfect system but you asked about what conditions were needed for a healthy system and my viewpoint is that incentives are not part of the solution. A better system is one that has solid pay, reasonable benefits/pension, good working conditions.
     
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  18. Backroads

    Backroads Enthusiast

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    Ah, got you.

    Nope, I don't get that impression with my charter and friends who work at other charters in the state. We work about the same number hours and I have much more planning time than in my last position. We don't have a union, but there is an association so... however you run that.

    That said, there is one charter company I've heard of that is notorious for the long hours and low pay and such. On the student side, I suppose there's a benefit to the long school day and near-constant teacher access, if I were in a very low SES.

    But that's not what I know of the charter world.
     
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  19. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    If I had to define my better system it would be one that meets the needs of students based on existing limitations.

    For example salaries aren't the same everywhere because of cost of living differences. Likewise, some student populations simply require more so the workload on the staff must be greater. If anything, I'd say the work load in those public schools need to be boosted rather than seeing the charter schools as needing to cut theirs. At that point you can raise pay to make people accept those working conditions.

    Hopefully the changes coming to pension/benefits won't discourage too many from becoming teachers. I'm sure it will for some though.
     
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  20. Backroads

    Backroads Enthusiast

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    It depends on how they're used. I just barely got a bonus for no other reason than the principal apparently asked the board to give us bonuses and it was approved. I'm not complaining.

    My grade doesn't test and I haven't heard of anyone getting bonuses for test scores.

    I am against bonuses that try to make up for other lousy factors.
     
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