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View Diary: A political issue -- teacher pay (255 comments)

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  •  Another thought (4.00)
    As has been mentioned, we get paid FAR less here in Florida.  This is my first year.  I held off teaching until now because I could literally not afford to teach.  I, with my master's, am making less than half of what I made in the private sector.  It amazes me how unprofessionally the teaching profession is treated.  I happen to be certified in three areas, and am currently teaching in two of those areas, but only can get paid in one.  Believe me, in the private sector I got paid for any extra certification or expertise that I had.  Moreover, I could count on merit pay and/or merit bonuses based on my production.  Just imagine teachers getting a big bonus based on how well the parents felt their children were educated that year!!!

    My point is, and I think maybe teacherken's and many others' is as well, that if teachers received compensation at the same level as other professionals and professions, it could attract the (recognized) quality that it is perceived as missing.

    Now in my school district we elementary teachers are being encouraged to teach critical thinking skills.  That should give you hope.  But what if teachers like Ken and I and the others who take up teaching as a second career because we can afford to do what we love finally were able to afford doing it 20 years earlier?  What if we as a nation were able to field only teachers who had the talent and enthusiasm and the BRAINS to make learning fun and intriguing?  

    I'm glad that I took the drastic pay cut because what I am doing is so much more meaningful.  My three children and my husband are proud to say that I am a teacher, as am I.  And my graduate degree is no longer "going to waste".  But while I am held to many strictures as a professional, I am afraid that I am not really treated as a professional.    

    No one is more true to our American ideals and our Constitution than John Conyers.

    by whatsleft on Sun Jul 03, 2005 at 01:00:20 PM PDT

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