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Education, why are teachers so underpaid?

 
 
Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Aug, 2007 06:18 pm
Hear, hear, candidone1 !!

Your experience follows almost exactly that of every teacher I have ever known. Mrs. Nation and I hang out with some educators now and again (when they will have us) and one thing we have noticed is that teachers who are married to other teachers not only struggle to make ends meet, but, because of the time they spend preparing for class, grading papers, drafting lesson plans etc, they have much less time for each other.

And how did we let our schools become arenas of violence? Oh, yeah, I remember now. It's the liberals fault. Too much trying to figure out feelings.

That and the constant cutbacks on funding which removed all but the bare bones of education from the system--no more music class--Art? you must be joking---chemistry classes, but no labs--- biology classes, but no labs----industrial arts schools with no tools....

Joe(we've lost a generation)Nation
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Aug, 2007 06:27 pm
Candid1 - where do you teach?
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Mon 20 Aug, 2007 06:28 pm
Joe Nation wrote:

And how did we let our schools become arenas of violence? Oh, yeah, I remember now. It's the liberals fault. Too much trying to figure out feelings.

That and the constant cutbacks on funding which removed all but the bare bones of education from the system--no more music class--Art? you must be joking---chemistry classes, but no labs--- biology classes, but no labs----industrial arts schools with no tools....



It's good to see that you are holding up the drama dept. though... Rolling Eyes
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candidone1
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Aug, 2007 01:24 pm
littlek wrote:
Candid1 - where do you teach?


Calgary, Canada.
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Miller
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Aug, 2007 02:22 pm
Quote:
biology classes, but no labs


Nothing wrong with that when you consider the large number of medical schools that teach Anatomy via the computer. It's called
"virtual anatomy".

Now, all we need is the "virtual patient".
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Aug, 2007 06:27 pm
Miller: I read a very funny article a few days ago about the experiences of a woman who volunteers (okay, she gets paid a little something) to be the subject of a series of medical school students performing their first vital signs and symptoms exam. They've read all the books, they've seen the videos, what they haven't done is actually look up a person's nose.
I'll try to find it.

Fishin; I love you, man, but being blase about the future of your country doesn't strike me as anything but foolish. America wouldn't be the first nation to lose it's place at the front of world progress because of cynics and cheapskates.

Joe(It's difficult to build an economy on ideas if your populace has stopped thinking.)Nation
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Aug, 2007 07:29 pm
Joe Nation wrote:
Fishin; I love you, man, but being blase about the future of your country doesn't strike me as anything but foolish. America wouldn't be the first nation to lose it's place at the front of world progress because of cynics and cheapskates.



Who says I'm blase about the future of the country? The high school in my town still offers 13 varsity sports programs, 37 different languages, 19 science courses (with fully equipped labs), 14 visual artscourses, 9 performing arts courses, 13 music courses, etc... (and those numbers don't include the Special Ed versions of many of the same classes)

It seems to me that there is no problem with a lack of any of these sorts of classes or extracirricular activities. If anything there is such an abundance that they are watered down as to be meaningless an/or redundant. There are several hundred thousand schools in this country and the idea that none of them off anything other then core classes with under-equipped classrooms is playing Chicken Little.

Don't blame the people that think schools should be accountable for how they spend our money. Blame the people that are out spending taxpayer's money buying on $300,000 pieces of art to hang in school cafeterias instead of spending that money on teachers and equipment. Blame the people who use every way they can find to duck paying their fair share of property taxes as well as the idiots that create ways for them to do it.

It's easy to spew the party line and say that every teacher should start at $90K/yr but I'll bet you scream like a baby when your property tax bill goes up year after year. How much extra (above the billed amount) do you pay each year when you pay your taxes? I'd guess that's a big fat zero... If your home is anything like the average in the U.S., the tax value listed in your city/town tax rolls is significantly less than it's actual value as well so you probably aren't even paying the full taxes you should be paying to begin with.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 06:35 am
37 different languages? Wow.

We just got three compulsary here. (And depending on the seize of the school, additionally perhaps three or four more. [The school in my native town, where I went to, is with 1.400 pupils one of the greatest in our state, but just offers Spanish and Italian additionally to the 'normal' Latin, English and French.)

Besides that, I doubt we have many universities where you can study on MA-level (= that's what teachers have to do) more than a dozen languages.
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Miller
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 06:58 am
Quote:
The high school in my town still offers 13 varsity sports programs, 37 different languages, 19 science courses (with fully equipped labs), 14 visual artscourses, 9 performing arts courses, 13 music courses, etc... (and those numbers don't include the Special Ed versions of many of the same classes)


My little high school on the SouthSide of Chicago surely never offered such a rich curriculum to their students. We didn't have a sports program and we had only Spanish and Latin offered. I had to take 2 years of high school Latin.

But in college, I had to take both German and French.

As far as science in our little school, we had biology, chemistry and physics, which prepared all ofus well for some of the top Universities in the State of Illinois and elsewhere. After one year of high school chemistry, I went on to college and took, inorganic chem, organic chem, analytical chem, biochem, physical chem, medicinal chem, protein chem, enzymology, advanced biochem, analytical biochem, biochem of nucleic acids,
carbohydrate chem and clinical chem.

My little high school prepared me very well, even though we had only one chemistry course offered.


Cool
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 07:02 am
Miller wrote:
But in college, I had to take both German and French.


Well, that's a big difference between our and the US-education system: we choose what want to study at college/university = when studying a language, you want to become a teacher, or an interpretor, or .... whatever in that language.

(Or you do it just for fun, but not academically.)
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Miller
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 11:01 am
Walter Hinteler wrote:
Miller wrote:
But in college, I had to take both German and French.


Well, that's a big difference between our and the US-education system: we choose what want to study at college/university = when studying a language, you want to become a teacher, or an interpretor, or .... whatever in that language.

(Or you do it just for fun, but not academically.)


The language requirement for the PhD in chemistry was German plus either French or Russian.

The language exams were two parts: scientific plus literary.

I especially enjoyed ready German poetry. As far as scientific German is concerned, I thought it was difficult.
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McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 11:16 am
German Poetry? Really?

A rather abrupt language if you ask me, not well suited for poetry.
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georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 11:22 am
"abrupt" ??? You have clearly not encountered German compound words or sentence structure.

I think many may be justly inclined to argue with you about the poetry.
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georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 11:32 am
I think that much of the discussion here has missed a very striking elementary point.

Teachers in this country are represented by very strong and well financed unions. They work (ultimately) for local School Boards whose members are elected by popular vote in the communities they serve. Numerous strikes have occurred, some involving extended school closings over matters of pay and benefits. Why, under these circumstances, is there so much public resistence to the demands of teachers for more money?

Why are school vouchers such a hotly debated issue? What motivates the substantial popular support for such programs, despite the well-financed opposition of Teacher's Unions and the National Educational Association? Why, despite all the well-publicized concerns about poor school performance in many areas, is there so much public resistence to spending more money on them? Is it conceivable that the widespread negative correlation between per capita student spending and measured student performance on standard tests is a cause factor?
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 11:44 am
georgeob1 - you say we're missing the point, what's the point?
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engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 12:35 pm
Let me take a different approach to the original question. Salaries are based on supply and demand. When you can't hire enough teachers (with the qualifications you want), you raise salaries. If there is a glut, there is no need to pay more. Of course this is true for everyone, not just teachers, but it tends to explain the salaries very well. The downward pressure of limited funds versus the upward pressure of teacher availability. The marketplace has driven teacher salaries where they are. In states where teachers have to have graduate degrees to teach, they get paid more. In private schools where teachers tend to get a better group of students, they make less (more competition for the positions.) It's not that society doesn't value or respect teachers, it's just the rules of economics playing out. When teachers start quiting to work in factories for better pay, the pendulum will swing a little to restore the balance.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 12:50 pm
McGentrix wrote:
German Poetry? Really?

A rather abrupt language if you ask me, not well suited for poetry.



I agree: Goethe, Schiller ... eegitt. Nothing worth reading or even mentioning.
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dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 12:54 pm
more light, more light.
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Francis
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 12:58 pm
I was going to say mehr licht...
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Miller
 
  1  
Reply Wed 22 Aug, 2007 01:39 pm
McGentrix wrote:
German Poetry? Really?

A rather abrupt language if you ask me, not well suited for poetry.


I loved it.
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