Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Let's Hear it for Teachers!

Teachers should be paid for all those extra hours they work on their own time. As a part-time instructor I probably put in around 10 hours a week on my own time, but of course, no pay. I know that I am not the only one, as my best friend is an elementary school teacher. She spent weeks planning her room for opening day, buying so much of the materials on her own.

I am thrilled to be in a profession that I feel, changes lives. I love what I do and feed off of the energy of my college kids. I feel that I am supposed to be doing this and feel it is the perfect profession for the gifts that God has chosen to grant me. How many others have begun this profession with this same optimism and energy, only to have been discouraged that their jobs did not stop at 4:00. When they go home, another 4-5 hours of school related work is awaiting them. For some teachers I know, this adds up to a 60-70 hour workweek but only getting paid for 40. How many other professions have this kind of schedule and willingly put up with it? Doctors? Lawyers? Possibly many more, but you can bet their paycheck does accomodate their lengthy hours. Can we say the same of our public school teachers?

Some may argue that teachers are adequately paid because they get summers off. But do you realize how short that summer has become? Do you realize how many of these teachers are required to attend month-long seminars during their "summer vacations"? I know that my neice and best friend both were in month- long seminars to retain their certification this past summer and my neice had to pay for it out of her own pocket, not to mention the additional child care that was needed for her son. Just as she finished that seminar she had to begin to put her lesson plans together and decorate her room, all of which occupied weeks before school started. That was a "fun" summer.

I don't know of any current legislation that is offering to increase teacher salaries, but when it happens ,please support it. Teachers pick this profession for all the right reasons, but are leaving it for all the wrong ones.


  1. I totally agree that teachers need to be compensated way better than have been. I've personally seen how much of your own free time you've spent to make sure your students get much more than what they paid for. You're an excellent teacher not only to your current TCC students, but to your children and dim bulb husband as well.

  2. Amen! I had no idea what being an educator was all about until I started teaching. I remember saying constantly my first few weeks last year, "You just don't understand teaching until you teach!" I called all my old favorite teachers and thanked them for all the time I never even realized they put into my education. ...and here I just thought teachers made up stuff for us to do while we were in class and just watched us do it! Now I crack up listening to this year's new teachers say the same things about being shocked about all the outside work that goes into teaching. Class with the kids is the easiest part of the job! I am thankful to be where I'm at though because my district does pay well and tries to find stipends, grants, etc. to keep their teachers around. But, of course, there's more training if you want to earn that extra money...good times. Love the blog, Ava - keep it up!

  3. Oh, I totally agree with your assessment! Working in an elementary school, I get to witness what teachers have to endure and put up with. I know the time they put in is extensive! I've seen teachers give their own money to pay for supplies and planners for kids who can't afford it. It is truly amazing! You all are worth so much more that you are paid!

    Love the blog, girl! Can't wait to read more!

  4. Teaching is such a unique career. It's always amazed me that they are required to maintain their certification and continueing education pretty much on their own time, much like a self employed individual. Most companies will spend lots of money and hours training employees to get them ready to do a job. Hurrah for teachers and their incredible contribution they make.

  5. Hey, I am new to your blog. I found you through Sherrinda's Blog and thought I'd stop by and say hi.

    I love this post. I am a teacher )though not currently working- currently raising babies!) and I agree withe you :) Teacher make a difference in this world. At least, they have the chance to make a difference :) Some take that chance with both hands, others should leave the profession before I find em :)

  6. This is my mom. Write more, mom.

    I love you.

  7. great i never thought someone would share my feelings... i have always been hiding them. i can finally say teaching change lives...but it is also true that your life is also changed by teaching...challenge is only for teachers.


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