Sunday, March 08, 2009

California Teachers Well Paid

One thing that always irks me is the suggestion that Californians don't put enough money into education. Along that same line, we're told we don't pay our teachers enough. Well, all the school teachers I know seem to get along quite well.

The Orange County Register takes a look at teacher's pay and notes California teacher's pay is the highest in the nation.


At 9:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you for real? Do you really think teachers aren't worth the meager wage they earn? Or that education is overrated?

Where were you educated? Did you pay for it. If you didn't pay...think about it, would you have been able to gain an education if you were required to pay for that education. If you did pay for your education, do you think access to knowledge should really be something you have to pay for?

I get your fiscal conservative libertarian political bias, but saying that teachers make too much is going a little overboard. Let me guess....we should privatize education to make it more efficient, it would foster competition, higher quality teachers, schools, students.....WRONG. Worst idea ever. Seems more like libertarian dogma than good common sense.

If anything, we should be putting more money into education... you know "kids are the future" sort of thing. Education is a noble and extremely important occupation. If anything we need to pay our educators more, and put more money into our education system.

... stop being so misanthropic and pull your head out of your ass.

At 9:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know a teacher in Santa Rosa who works through the Americore program who gets under 15 thousand annually. She's on food stamps.

At 10:17 AM, Blogger Kym said...

Salaries have apparently come up since I've paid attention. $60,000 is a decent wage. But when pointing out that Calif. has the highest wages it is germane to note that Calif. also has one of the highest costs of living also.

Furthermore, I've been a teacher and most of us have been parents. As parents most of us have been in charge of a birthday party or two. You know how exhausting chasing 10 kids around for 2 or 3 hours can be. Now picture being a teacher with 30 kids and you are supposed to never raise your voice, stifle all swear words, answer questions about sex from the children of Jehovah Witness's without seeming prudish to the parents who have been talking about where babies come from since their kids were babies. etc.

Do this and more while managing to maintain an honest dialogue with your students and actually educate them--hopefully in such a way they enjoy it.

Teachers deserve a decent wage.

Besides teachers' wages, schools are underfunded and facing cuts. Just look at Jen the Redneck Romance Writer's last post. She lives in Humboldt and faces cuts in important support for her sons.
You can read it here.

At 10:19 AM, Blogger Fred said...

I knew this post might bring out the riff- raff.

9:32 wrote, "Are you for real? Do you really think teachers aren't worth the meager wage they earn?".

I said California teachers are well paid. I didn't say anything in regards how much they're worth.

Touchy, touchy, aren't we?

9:48 wrote, "She's on food stamps.".

We're talking about state paid teachers in state run schools. I believe Americorp is a federal volunteer/ jobs program, isn't it? Maybe she should upgrade and try to get on with the state?

Here's the Americorps web page:

Like I said, all the [state] teachers I know seem to get along quite well financially.

At 10:22 AM, Blogger Fred said...

riff- raff also wrote, "If anything, we should be putting more money into education...".

California already spends nearly half its budget on education, with not a lot to show for it. How much more do you propose we spend on education?

At 10:23 AM, Blogger Kym said...

Fred, I also forgot to add that teachers spend some of their salary on stuff for their kids--stuff like books. I know that when I was teaching I frequently spent up to a quarter of my take home pay (definitely not $60, 000) on the kids. I also worked a great deal more than 8 hours a day. I worked in a private school and was janitor, administrator, principal, school board member, fundraiser, mother, and, oh yeah, teacher.

My mom who was "only" a school secretary often took money from her salary to pay for kids' dental visits and extra clothes. If you work with kids and have a heart, your salary has to stretch further than other peoples.

At 10:30 AM, Blogger Fred said...

Teaching isn't the only profession where people receive a salary and might spend more than 8 hours a day working, or spend money out of their pockets for their job.

The military is one example that comes to mind. Most in the military make less than teachers, yet they might well be on duty 24 hours straight, or longer.

And, yes, some even pay for equipment out of pocket, but that's normally their choice.

At 10:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not riff-raff responding to faux newsman/ budget analyst, et al:

Touchy, sure. I hate the thought of our already struggling education system being even further effected by thinking such as yours...

You point out that they are paid well, but then want to say that your not trying to, at least on some level, insinuate that well = too much...I am not buying it.

While, yes, we do put a lot of our state budget into education, it could be better, no secret that many programs are underfunded......hmmm, where should it go? Maybe, arts, music, physical education/nutrition, after school programs, books,.... I guess maybe those things are overrated, just like our teachers.

...If our teachers are payed well... wonderful. They deserve it.... that's all.

BTW Orange County is a hotbed of conservatism in CA-Maybe this has something to do with the spin on this article.

At 10:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

not riff-raff again-
Why don't you respond to Kym's very good points.

It seems as if I pulled you card, and now you'd rather bicker with me than address the other side of the issue....

At 11:03 AM, Blogger Fred said...

""it could be better, no secret that many programs are underfunded.....".

And you have to wonder why that is as funding for education increases every year whether enrollments grow or decline.

I'm not saying it's happening this time. I'm not sure, but 9 out of 10 times when we hear of education funding being "cut", they really mean funding isn't being increased as much as some would like. This latest budget fiasco might actually mean they're going to do with less for a change. Again, I'm not sure.

"Orange County is a hotbed of conservatism in CA-Maybe this has something to do with the spin on this article.".

Not exactly. The Orange County Register has been a libertarian/ conservative oriented newspaper for decades. I read that paper as a kid when I lived down there. I've found their editorials to be some of the most level- headed pieces I've read in any newspapers, at least most of the time.

At 11:07 AM, Blogger Fred said...

Kym wrote, "Teachers deserve a decent wage.".

I believe they do get a decent wage, at least after they've been on the job for a while. I'd kill for that kind of money.

At 11:58 AM, Blogger Eureka Poz said...

I taught in Los Angeles and my class size was 36 students to one teacher. Two times students were pulled out my class for weapons possession and there were a number of drug arrests in and around my classroom.

Fred, maybe you feel teachers are "well paid" because of what you earn on your job. Perhaps you are just comparing two things. Why don't you tell us what you earn and what you think teachers earn.

At 1:04 PM, Blogger Fred said...

How else are you going to judge pay for different jobs if not by comparing jobs?

But, for what it's worth, I probably make 1/5 of what somebody making $60,000 a year makes. I get paid by the job, though, and don't work the hours teachers do so the comparison doesn't really work.

When I was pay grade E-6 in the military, I think I was getting around $2500 a month after taxes (I THINK- that was a while back). During my active duty in Saudi Arabia we worked 12 hours shifts, seven days a week. Not sure if teachers got paid that much back then, or not.

At 3:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can't pay teachers enough. They have the single most important job in the world.

If California ranks among the highest in the US, that's sad. An elementary school teacher I know is barely getting by. It's a tough life.

At 4:21 PM, Blogger lodgepole said...

Teachers do what I call part time work-9 months a year, stacked with vacations. They get plenty, and we needn't argue about what they may or may not buy at their own discretion.

At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"At 3:10 PM, Anonymous said...
You can't pay teachers enough"

Oh yes you can. California teachers are among the highest paid in the nation. This state devotes 50% of its income on education and for what...students who rate at the bottom ten percent of the nation.

At 1:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fred, you are only irritating people because the truth hurts. Teachers are better paid than they'll ever admit. Teachers belly-ache about not being paid enough for one reason. They have way too much time on their hands.

At 8:38 PM, OpenID thelonelytrader said...

Ah hell. My heart bleeds for all those teachers who think they aren't getting paid well. They really need to walk down the hallway and tell that fat bitch who always calls in sick (with pay), who claims disability (because she can't stop eating ding dongs in between class periods), who punches in the clock for seniority and then writes a half-assed lesson plan for the next fifteen to twenty years, and then gets all assed up over a proposal to put teachers on merit pay...

Man, fuck them. I have two in-laws who are the most arrogant, assed up teachers I know. Probably not your typical hard working teacher, I know. So why don't the hard working teachers start giving the ass beating to those who are gaming the system? I'm sure that once the unions are done away with and the fat asses are gone, we'll have more than enough money to pay every teacher a living wage.

Really. Think about it. Freeloaders abound in California -- all the damn unions. Look, I'm a democrat. And I'm a military officer. And I'm sick and tired of all these whiney, lazy people that think they are entitled to getting paid a living wage for their sloth.

Pay teachers on performance. Then see what happens. Let the cream rise to the top, and dump the rest. (And believe me, the cream can make it work without the dead weight.)

At 9:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

well fred, it seems you suceeded in awakening the blog reading teachers. Seems they all get their talking points from the same union propaganda. Every dam public employee union whines about the same thing. How many private sector jobs allow retirment at 52? How about life time insurance for you and your family after 5 years at HSU? Not bad work if you can get it. I for one am tired of high taxs to subsidise overpaid and over benifited government employees weather they be teachers or prisson gusrds, not that there are not pleanty of good government employees, but thats not the point.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger carlos said...

I see your point, but I am a 3rd year teacher at LAUSD and make less than 40k. I have to do summer school to afford my one bedroom apartment in Burbank that I share with my wife and kid. I tell you, when you adjust for the cost of living, I don’t think that I am making out like a bandit. I have a great deal of administrative responsibilities that keep me occupied past working hours that I don’t get paid for, not to mention, the vast majority of students don’t come to school with the materials needed (I have to pay for paper and pencils). There are a lot of veteran teachers that have been teaching for decades that are in a far better position than me, plus they didn’t have to pass all of the rigorous state credentialing and tests new teachers must undergo. I honestly don’t know where all of this money is going, it’s not in my classroom I can tell you that. As for the low test scores, it’s difficult to teach kids who can’t read in English or in their native language. These students can’t be retained, due to laws that people, who have not set foot in a classroom for ages, have created.

At 9:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only people who think that teachers are overpaid are people who are not teachers and have not a clue about what the job entails. People who sit around at a desk all day and work with adults have not a clue about how hard it is to work with kids all day.

At 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Teachers overpaid-- are you crazy ! I'm a 2nd year teacher and barely make it through the month. Not only do I work well over 10 hours a day at school, I have considered getting another job to help pay student loans. Wherever the money is going it is not going to classrooms. Our system just passed a statement saying school supplies are no longer mandatory- but rather optional. Meaning with the 200 I have left after my apt, electric, internet, and loans paid I have to buy kids supplies because their parents have more important things to pay for. On top of that... teaching is HARD! I never go to bed without thinking of what tomorrow entails. Cuts are ridiculous- They can afford to build new schools, but not pay teachers. Our system let go of 650 teachers, then had to hire most back because 50 kids in a classroom is ineffective due to everyone thinking their child needs special treatment and care. No longer do kids all get the same work- you must accomodate. Meaning I have 10 out of 30 kids doing something easier or harder because the law tells me to do that. You have no idea about the world of teaching.

At 9:26 PM, Anonymous Andrew said...

If the job sucks so much do what other adults do, quit and find another job. If schools can't find teachers because the pay is too low, then they will pay them more. This is how the rest of us live, the only reason teachers can even go about demanding higher pay is that they work for the government and we pay their salaries. By the way, I work hard for your teacher salary to, it's called taxes.

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What do you think about this now? More than a year later.


Post a Comment

<< Home