Published: Wednesday, June 19 2013 9:20 a.m. MDT
Teachers argue that tenure is necessary so that they cant be fired for
personality conflicts, and a pension is needed so that they can concentrate on
the kids they teach and not on their future. I dont agree, but many teachers
unions use that as an argument that pension money in fact filters to the
classroom as the kids benefit from having a stress free teacher..
Pensions were used by states and districts as ways to delay paying teachers
higher salaries. Then many of these entities failed to fund these pensions
properly. Both parties went into these agreements with full understanding.
Retired teachers SHOULD get these pensions that they earned by fulfilling their
obligations. I am all for getting rid of pensions and even health care benefits
but it might be best to raise the actual salary for teachers because as it
stands now, it is hard to attract and retain teachers as salaries have not
expanded and these benefits are being reduced or taken away (for new hires).
It is almost funny to see this tragic comedy unfold, even though it had all the
predictability of a sunset.The story of these ridiculously
constructed pension plans parallels the lunacy of the municipal mismanagement of
states like Illinois, California and Rhode Island, along with bankrupt cities
like Stockton, San Bernadino and most recently and largest by far, Detroit. One
glaring similarity that, with very few exceptions, characterizes all the worst
examples, is that they were/are run with heavy Democrat majorities.What are we to surmise from this?One obvious and ominous take away
is that there is a fundamental financial dysfunctionality in the mentality of
many people attracted to the Democrat party.Furthermore, since the
Federal government has been presided over by an ardently Democrat administration
for the last 4.5 years and will be for at least 3.5 more, it should be no
surprise that we're headed toward a very dismal financial future.Choices have consequences.
Howard Beal:"it is hard to attract and retain teachers"?Except for a few specialized subjects, or very isolated areas. Teachers
are a dime a dozen. We won't run out.Many districts have a
drawer full of applications. If teachers were under paid, they would quit and
go somewhere else.
worf: they are quitting and going somewhere else. Nearly 40% of the teachers
in the district are "probationary teachers" or have three years or less
experience. Now, I would like you to argue how this is good for our children.
Perhaps, there a lots of teaching candidates (as you say), but obviously
retaining them is problematic and our schools might as well just have turnstiles
for teachers. Again, how is this good for our schools and children?
worf:From reading your blogs I understand you are either a veteran
teacher or a retired teacher? Are you planning on giving your pension money
back to the government? If so, I won't dare call you a hypocrite.
To "Howard Beal" having lots of young teachers is great because that
reduces the possibility of the "Old Guard" teachers preventing the
younger ones from making changes to the school. Go and watch "Waiting for
Superman", and tell us how great it is to have the older teachers keeping
the status quo.
samhill, I know it doesn't bolster your argument, since you want to blame
the Democratic Party for all the problems, but you forgot Republican managed
Tooele County. Their problem isn't pensions, though they have tried very
hard to make it into a pension problem, but they discovered a way around
pensions - just lay everyone off. Perhaps while we are eagerly piling on the
government workers who were promised pensions and healthcare, we should place
some of the blame on the snake oil salesmen who convinced these Cities and
States that all they had to do was invest in some pyramid scheme and the money
would appear magically to pay these pensions. I wonder about the
mentality of a nation that is so want to blame the victim for the evil doers
acts. It takes a lot of chutzpah to do this with such conviction. I feel sorry
for those who lived their lives and did what they were advised to do and now are
being cast off as unwanted burdens on their money grubbing progeny. I carefully
planned my retirement, but if you and your ilk get your way, I will be penniless
and living in the street.
Redshirt:I've watched "Waiting for Superman" which is
an interesting documentary with some good points but far from perfect unless we
want to both agree that "Bowling for Columbine" was the definitive
documentary on American gun violence. I doubt you will go there.But
more to the point. I wouldn't say that schools that had all or mostly
veteran teachers is a good thing either. I would prefer a mix of teachers, that
would be best. It is no doubt that young teachers can bring new ideas and
enthusiasm to a school. However, a school is a community and the constant
turnover happening now in public education is bad for schools pure and simple.
Slow steady turnover is good. There are many good teachers in the "old
guard" as you call it. I think experience counts for something. When I
fly on a plane, I feel more comfortable with some experience in the cockpit, not
three pilots just starting out no matter how good they think they are. Also,
many younger teachers who know they are moving on don't invest as much in
the school or community. Veteran teachers have made that investment, it makes a
To "Howard Beal" Bowling for Columbine is nothing more than propaganda
that has as much credibility as a a Jr. High science teacher does for the Nobel
Prize committee.The good teachers are beginning to leave the system
because of the mandates that are coming down, and the testing requirements.
There are fewer "good" teachers now than there were 20 years ago.Unlike piloting an aircrat, teaching can benefit from young teachers.
Young teachers have not been doing the same thing over and over again for the
past 10 years, which is good for a pilot, but bad for the ever changing needs of
kids in schools.You say that many younger teachers know that they
will be moving on. Tell us why they are moving on.What good does it
do for a community if they have a school full of veteran teachers that
don't adapt to the kids, and are not that good at teaching?
The fact is it takes a lot workers to pay for the pension of one retiree.One estimate was that it took 17 workers to pay for the retirement of 1
person.So where is the left going find all these current workers? A
number which grows exponentially.Leftest/Socialist retirement plans
just do not work. They bankrupt everyone.
You mean a government-run benefits program has failed to do what it was intended
to do and has become a money-sucking vacuum? Shocking!!! 8^O
I can't believe some of these comments. Wanting inexperience teachers
teaching your children??? Children in this of all states should garner our
highest priority of funding AND the highest expectations of quality teaching.
Let's figure out a just and equitable way to evaluate teachers and pay the
best ones more, just like in any other industry. I want my kids in a class with
an experience, innovative teacher who uses proven techniques to enhance my
child's learning AND as a society we should be willing to pay for it!
To Red Shirt: In my experience as a parent of 7 kids and teacher for 32 years,
now retired, the schools that had the most problem were those with very few
veteran teachers. High turnover rates translate to discipline and continuity
problems. As a general rule, those schools with the least discipline problems
and highest parental support had higher amounts of veteran teachers - more
experience at the school. New teachers are much more likely to fall for faulty
philosophies and programs. Veterans have come to know what works and what
doesn't.To the article: This pension problem is happening in
those stated areas, because they are declining in student population and
therefore aren't hiring new teachers to replace and pay for pensions.
Declining populations are doing this in Europe as well.The pensions
are not the problem. It's not having children that is causing the problem.
Utah is not facing this problem.
There is hope on the horizon.... It's called Mooc's.It's just a matter of time until a huge percentage of the teachers will
be gone. Just like Netflix and RedBox killed the Blockbuster model, Mooc's and internet learning will kill the 30 students-1 teacher in a
classroom model. It will shift to massive amounts of students per teacher and
much of the learning being done online. Maybe it's 10 years out. But it
will shift eventually. This $ pressure will only accelarate the needs. I'm not saying the learning will be better (it might in some
cases). I'm just saying education will shift to this model.
The priority for payments to government employees should be higher than any
other obligation of our state government. Stop payment on the bond payments for
UTOPIA, UTA, and all the other scams used to rob the taxpayer.
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