September 15th, 2012
09:00 AM ET

Why they teach despite it all

By Christina Zdanowicz, CNN

(CNN) - Fourth-grade teacher by day, adjunct professor and mother by night, Renee Longshore keeps a strict budget and pulls a second income all in the name of teaching.

With her husband's two jobs - he's also a fourth-grade teacher and an adjunct professor - the master's-educated couple makes four incomes. But, money is tight for this family of six.

While Longshore's passion for teaching children helps her overlook her modest life, she sometimes resents her job. She feels under-appreciated by parents at times and like her profession isn't respected.

"My paycheck does not reflect my expertise," she wrote on CNN iReport. "The minimal esteem shown is not warranted, considering my formal schooling and experience. ... But I teach, because that is who I am."

Despite administration frustrations and poor classroom conditions - and for Chicago teachers, a weeklong strike - why do they do it?

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Filed under: iReport • Issues • Teacher Appreciation • Teachers