Skip to main content

View Diary: The problem with NBC's Education Nation -  where are the voices of parents and teachers? (279 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Only when, by comparison, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sandblaster, lilypew, Azazello

    the American workforce has been hollowed out by Corporate America. You do not know how many times in the last 30 years Real Estate agents, Insurance Agents, Amway shills, Corporate execs have told me, you know, you ought to make some real money, quit teaching, and do yourself some good.

    I didn't because I could see the house of cards they were building, and I knew that teaching had its own rewards. Spiritual rewards, if you will.

    And now, when they have destroyed America's economy, shipped the capital to the Barbados, sent the jobs to non-union countries, suddenly all those real estate agents, corporate execs and Amway shills are looking longingly at my small salary and saying.... "YOU MAKE TOO MUCH!"

    I tell them I have fought and bled for my students, and anyone who doubts my sincerity better say it to my face. And so, princss, please believe me. Your disatisfaction with school is largely manufactured by the ones who stand to profit from your dissatisfaction. Work with your kid's teachers. Don't confront, don't accuse. Learn to cooperate and team up with them, and I guarantee, your kid will get what he wants. If you go in like an asshole, that is the end of the system you will see, the rear end.  If you go in like a co-worker, you will be welcomed back again and again. My personal guarantee, wherever you live. Even DC.

    Figures don't lie, but liars do figure-Mark Twain

    by OregonOak on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 09:36:35 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Beautifully said. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Azazello

      Thanks.

      "There must be more to life than having everything" -Maurice Sendak

      by lilypew on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 09:45:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Please DO NOT (0+ / 0-)

      presume to tell me where my disaffection lies.  I'm my own person and can think.  This is not corporate media-driven.  It is life experiences driven.  I love my kids teachers.  I would do anything for them because the education they provided for my son CHANGED HIS LIFE.  But guess what, they aren't unionized, one hasn't been paid in months.  But my kid learned when the public school with unionized teachers and more resources tried to throw him away.  I also am a product of good teachers and that is why I'm not buying this demonization of poor and minority children.  I've spent more time with my kid's teacher than most will spend in a lifetime.  Up until this year, I saw my kid's teachers every day at pick-up.  So don't presume to tell me that what I know and see and what others share with me is based on some media-driven narrative.  Hint:  my people ain't necessarily treated to kindly by te media so I've had to learn discernment at an early age.  That statement was kind of condescending.

      •  I am not Presuming (0+ / 0-)

        I am using the words you have written. There is no presumption on my part. I know exactly what you are saying, and I understand. I dont agree, but I do understand.

        Figures don't lie, but liars do figure-Mark Twain

        by OregonOak on Sat Sep 18, 2010 at 09:59:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Talk about bad faith... (0+ / 0-)

          I don't think you understand.  You are viewing this through a prism of protect teachers at all cost or teachers are above criticism.  If you dare point out glaring issues with teacher quality then you must be a paid shill or corpocrat or worse, uneducated.  None of these accusations have anything to do with the issue but there you are and here we are and I'm the one trying to shift the debate?  Yeah, right.

      •  Do people really wonder why (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sandblaster

        teachers unionize?

        But guess what, they aren't unionized, one hasn't been paid in months.

        What kind of school system refuses to pay the teachers who change the lives of their students?

        •  Independent private school.... (0+ / 0-)

          These teachers put their money where their mouth is....not to disparage others but for a lack of a better word.  They teach because they love it and see a need among their students.  They own the school and with the economy over the last few years and the rise of charter schools, the school has been decimated.  Yet after 30 plus  years they continue.  At times, without pay and at times without health insurance and at great cost to their own financial well-being when they could just go and teach in a private or charter school and never worry about a paycheck.

          •  and to think (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            sandblaster, Azazello

            just a few moments ago in another post, you disputed the "noble martyrdom" of teachers.

            Shrug... (0+ / 0-)
            bottom line for me.  I'm not really invested in the noble matyr when most teachers are making damn good money with damn good benefits relative to a whole host of people in this country.  I'm more invested in results.  I don't care in what mode the education takes place as long as it is happening.  Someone making a profit isn't a deal breaker for me and a lot of others if my kid is learning.

            •  Damn comment eaten... (0+ / 0-)

              in a nutshell... you betcha.  There are some real martyrs, teachers with the benefit of a guaranteed salary and benefits hardly fit my criteria when I know of teachers who go without pay.  You betcha.  Also, these same teachers' results far and away outpace the results of public school teachers, even in good districts.  These teachers aren't out striking every day, in fact, they RARELY miss a day of work.  Paid, vacation, please!  

              That's real altruism and matyrdom.  But if public school teachers don't get their cost of living wages or are asked to contribute more to their damn good benefits, oh shoot, it is time to shut down the schools.  Meanwhile, the parents of the poor kids served by these teachers WOULD die and go to heaven to have the type of income teachers make.  Don't get it wrong, teachers starting out my be on the low-end of the professions but they certainly aren't on the low-end of wage earners.

              Having said that, should we pay teachers more?  Sure, but don't think there aren't teachers doing more with less out there because that is false.

              •  I am really at a loss trying (0+ / 0-)

                to follow your reasoning.

                On one hand - teachers are paid better than most and you disagree that many are altruistically motivated. Then you demonize the unions and question why they advocate for higher pay. Then you point out that your kid's wonderful, life-changing, non-unionized, teacher has gone for months without pay or health benefits. If your idea of reform is based on this model, I don't think it will get much traction. I do care about kids. But, I can't work without compensation. I have to keep a roof over my head and buy premium dog food. I suppose everything else could be negotiable.

                You seem to think having a simple cost of living salary increase or health benefits are unreasonable demands. Where are all of these strikes you mention taking place?

                •  My arguments are nuanced... (0+ / 0-)

                  On one hand - teachers are paid better than most and you disagree that many are altruistically motivated.

                  That's really not what I said.  I was simply making the point that there are many teachers making decent wages when you compare them to all wage earners.  This is fact.  I don't think all or even most teachers are altruistically motivated.  There are many who are, sure!  But in general, IMO, no and I used the example of my kid's teacherS (plural - more than one went without pay) to butress how not only relative to all wage earners but also to other teachers, most unionized teachers are doing pretty well.  In other words, unions are not necessary nor sufficient to educate children.  They serve the teachers and some teachers, many teachers serve children without the benefit of unions.  And yet, those non-union teachers are getting results in many cases without the benefit of the union.  

                  Then you demonize the unions and question why they advocate for higher pay.

                  I wasn't demonizing unions.  They do what they are supposed to do.  I just really question why if teachers say that they need x, y, z to improve STUDENT outcomes, why teachers aren't out striking for those improvements.  You hear teachers say, well we need this to improve student outcomes and I'm willing to listen but then there is no advocacy on the part of the unions unless and until it affects teacher pay or tenure.  I find that problematic.  I have to think through my labor law but certainly some of the things like smaller class size could be instituted in contracts, right?  Certainly a strike which I'm sure would be supported by parents and kids - if indeed class sizes leads to improvements - would then be a way to advocate for students not only teachers.

                  Then you point out that your kid's wonderful, life-changing, non-unionized, teacher has gone for months without pay or health benefits. If your idea of reform is based on this model, I don't think it will get much traction.

                  My idea of reform is based on outcomes.  I don't like the fact that these teachers went without pay or healthcare especially given their results.  As a matter of fact, if teacher salary was based on results, these teachers would be rich.  I don't mind paying GREAT teachers a lot of money or them making a profit.  I don't.  However, I know the current system isn't working for too many kids.

                  I do care about kids. But, I can't work without compensation. I have to keep a roof over my head and buy premium dog food. I suppose everything else could be negotiable.

                  I would never question your motives.  I know you can't work without compensation but my point really was and is, if improvements are made, teachers will not have union jobs.  The argument that nothing can be done really hasn't been successful.  Arguing that nutrition, sleep and drama-free lives are a huge impediment is not convincing many people outside of teachers and their unions.  I wish we lived in a country that teachers were at the top of the pay scale.  But the poorer the outcomes for children, the easier it is to undercut teachers wages and earnings.  I think it is to teachers and the unions detriment to not realize this and I also think demonize reform isn't going to be successful either.  

                  You seem to think having a simple cost of living salary increase or health benefits are unreasonable demands. Where are all of these strikes you mention taking place?

                  Honestly, I don't think that at all.  I'm just pointing out that there are teachers who don't have that benefit and yet they teach.  Every year there is a strike or threat of strike in my state.  

                  •  That should read... (0+ / 0-)

                    "if improvements AREN'T made, teachers won't have union jobs"

                  •  So (0+ / 0-)

                    good luck finding a future filled with wonderful teachers who have high expectations of their students and refuse to allow hunger or the lack of adequate shelter to impact the test scores of their students. After all, if the teacher is hard-working and competent, NOTHING else matters. Maybe one day, all of these talented and highly-motivated teachers will be fairly compensated and all of those lazy, union-loving, communist teachers will be removed from the payroll. Let the reform begin.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site