"The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves." -- John Adams

"No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." -- Indiana Constitution Article 1, Section 6.

"...no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinion in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish enlarge, or affect their civil capacities." – Thomas Jefferson

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Teacher, You're Paid Too Much!

The American Enterprise Institute and the Heritage Foundation have issued a report called Assessing the Compensation of Public-School Teachers in which the authors state,
...it is evident that existing public-school teachers receive wages that are at least as high as comparably skilled workers, while their benefits and job security exceed what they could earn in the private sector. Overall, public-school teacher compensation exceeds private levels by approximately 52 percent, for a total of more than $120 billion annually in excessive labor costs.
They also say that (referring to teacher training),
Years of education, in particular, is a misleading measure of teacher skill, both within the teaching profession and between teaching and non-teaching occupations. The field of education is less challenging than other academic concentrations...
Yes, perhaps (speaking for myself only) education classes are easier than astro-physics, for example. The most important aspects of teacher education, however, are the times spent working with students in student teaching, internships, summer clinics, and so on. As an education student in the 70s I spent time with children in varied settings putting in place what I learned from my "easy" classes. I am aware that there are people who believe that teaching is "like babysitting" and "you just tell them what they need to know." Sensitive readers, on the other hand, as well as any teacher, knows this just isn't true. While my class in "Methods of teaching Social Studies" might have been easier than Calculus, working with children in educational settings is challenging by any standard.

Numerous rebuttals have appeared, some of which I have listed at the end. My favorite, however, is a rebuttal which was made before the fact -- last February -- by Thom Hartman.

Other Rebuttals to the Heritage Foundation Report:

Are teachers paid too much?

The Teacher Salary Project

Teachers Make Too Much Money, Right?

Heritage Foundation and AEI Issue Report Exposing Dumb, Fatcat Teachers

Are Teachers Actually Overpaid?

And check this out...even Arne Duncan...

Teacher Pay Study Asks the Wrong Question, Ignores Facts, Insults Teachers

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