CNN education contributor Steve Perry on a Pennsylvania school's decision to raise money by putting itself up for auction on eBay. (From Starting Point)
Steve, where is your shared sacrifice? I have yet to see you announce that you are willing to take a pay cut. Why is it only the teachers have to pay? I make less than $36,000 a year. Of that $14,000 goes to taxes, insurance and retirement. My take home pay is $24,000 a year. Out of this I am expected to pay for all the supplies used in my classroom and for the training I have to have to keep my certification. I work 6am to 4pm daily and as I am a special education teacher and my students are ARDed to have school in the summer I work all 12 months.
The school board was kind enough to give us a small raise this year but it only covers half of the insurace increase. For the third staight year my take home pay has decreased.
So tell me while you sit there in your $1000 suits why is it only the teacher have to pay and not the administration (who every one of them makes 3 to 4 times the amount I do and work fewer hours)? Why do the teachers have to pay when the disctrict just bought 4 $100,000 busses so the football team can be comfortable? Why do the teachers have to pay and not the TEA who mandated all my students had to take a STAAR test and then not even bother to grade them?
Mr. Perry claims that labor costs won't go down. Why should they? At a time where districts are cutting budgets, cutting positions and giving more and more responsibilities to teachers, why exactly is Mr. Perry expecting that people will do more work for less pay as if it's THEIR fault that the economy has tanked?
Teachers are already paying into the system. They pay taxes, too. Many pay into their own health insurance, and they ALWAYS contribute a portion of the money they have earned into the pension system–they are effectively loaning that money to their states. That money belongs to them, but the system is set up so that the states can use the money that they have already earned for work they already did–money they won't see for a very long time. They pay into this because the system benefits everyone if managed correctly. If politicians are playing roulette with the pension system, is that the fault of the teachers? Not at all–so take your rhetoric somewhere else.
Mr. Perry, why do you seem to think educators do not shoulder any burden? You obviously do not value these people enough to tell the truth about what's really going on.
If you want them to take a pay freeze or even less pay, Mr. Perry, could you see to it that utilities bills don't go up? Could you see to it that grocery bills don't increase? Mr. Perry, could you see to it that the price of gas doesn't climb? Mr. Perry, since you think teachers don't deserve cost-of-living raises (what little they may be) so that they can function in society and continue to afford to be teachers, I think you need to tell everyone else with their hand out that it's time for "shared sacrifice" across the board. Why should all the rising costs only benefit the private sector? Tell THOSE people that they need to freeze their price increases. If you can GUARANTEE that the cost of living for teachers in that school district will not go up, I'm sure the teachers in that district will gladly accept no raises. In fact, tell all those businesses that raise prices that NO ONE should have to pay more to live. All people deserve to benefit from the "shared sacrifice" of these businesses.
Mr. Perry, are you prepared to shield every worker in the US from rising cost of living expenses? Mr. Perry, are you willing to take a cut in pay yourself?
Why aren't you addressing the wasting of district funds in the form of hiring people like yourself to "consult?" Why aren't you addressing the top-heavy school systems where one administrator makes three times what one teacher makes? Why not address the "big business" of corporations with hands in the public school coffers–corporations who are selling technology to districts and then getting tax write-offs for doing so? Why not address the business of standardized testing, a business that employes many, many private corporations needlessly? What about all the wasted money there? Surely you're not going to say that it's the measly teachers' salaries that are "unearned in the first place" that caused all the financial troubles, are you? You mean our economy tanked because of TEACHERS? Oh, and here I thought it was greedy bankers who were making loans they couldn't back. I thought was bad investments on the part of those in the financial world. BUT ALL THE WHILE, IT WAS TEACHERS WHO CAUSED THE ECONOMIC PROBLEMS. Man, I had no idea teachers could crash the stock market the way they did.
I think you have your priorities mixed up, but then again, you ARE the talking head of CNN's "education" team. You are jumping on the band-wagon of union-hate that CNN and other CORPORATE media outlets are touting. How can we expect an unbiased opinion on this topic if yours is the only opinion CNN puts forth? I thought CNN had a sense of journalistic integrity, but after watching this segment, I now know that I was wrong.
Steve Perry is a political pawn. How much is ALEC paying him to say all these things, anyway? Have you ever investigated whether or not your "consultant" has ties to ALEC? Have you ever investigated ALEC at all? I'm guessing, no. You're probably in the back pocket of the same. Shame on you, CNN, for continuing to keep this poor excuse for an "educator" on your payroll. Shame, shame, shame.
BTW, who keeps their college graduation gown on coat tree in their office and then puts it in the shot? If the rest of the public cannot see what a charlatan this clown is, then we are all doomed.
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