Local school districts are digging deep to attract, retain teachers

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  • birder Salt Lake City, UT
    May 31, 2017 2:37 p.m.

    Besides the tiny pay increases, nothing is being done to address working conditions-the huge classes, nonstop testing, scripted curriculum, low administrative support, behavior problems that teachers are not empowered to deal with, etc.

  • birder Salt Lake City, UT
    May 31, 2017 2:32 p.m.

    Districts should encourage veteran teachers to stick around. Their expertise stabilizes a school. But the new pay raises are heavily slanted towards new teachers. So, the new ones quit in a couple of years, the vets aren't paid enough to keep working, and what do you have? Still a huge shortage.

  • Husker1 Northern Utah County, UT
    May 31, 2017 1:57 p.m.

    @Z "Don't just complain; be an advocate. Attend board meetings and really get to know your district. And if you see a real problem, work to correct it. Blanket whining never fixed anything."

    You're assuming people on this board have not been involved. Again, I challenge you to go to Provo City School District website and tell me what some of those people do. The layers of management are ridiculous and would never exist in the business world...and many of those positions have been created within the last few years under the current superintendent.

  • BYU Sports Nut Heber City, UT
    May 31, 2017 1:17 p.m.

    For 100K they can have me. I would love to teach but I need to be able to support a family on a single income. Currently that is mostly impossible on Utah teachers wages.

  • YouAreKidding Salt Lake City, UT
    May 31, 2017 12:20 p.m.

    Increasing pay for teachers is a nice start. But, how about weeding out the bad teachers/principals that have NO business being in a classroom/school? My wife is a teacher in the Granite District, loves her kids and routinely helps them improve (not just get by) from the beginning to the end of the year. But, without fail, the District keeps her principal - who maintains no discipline with the students (my guess is that she is afraid of the parents), puts down teachers who don't do things her way, and has no problem hiring/retaining teachers she "gets along with" but would get fired from a C-store cashier's job. Throwing money at the problem only creates other problems. But, if the salaries go up, so should the expectations of the educators.

    Remember, though, that education begins AT HOME. Teachers should be allowed to give kids who deserve them "F"s and parents should be held accountable, financially if necessary, for not providing their kids what they need at home - time and help more than anything else - so their kids come to school ready to succeed. Parents' and students' attitudes should be checked at the door and teachers should be given the respect they deserve.

  • Z South Jordan, UT
    May 31, 2017 12:04 p.m.

    I see a lot of comments here that question the role of school administrators. But how many of you have actually been to a school board meeting, or have done any real research to find out who these people are, what their function is, and why they are paid what they are paid?

    It is simple to say that someone is paid too much, but unless you know what their job is, what the comparable salary is in the surrounding community, and how that job benefits the district, then all you are doing is setting up a straw man.

    The district exists for a reason: to free up teachers to teach, not organize. It is disingenuous to suggest that you can take a large school district and remove all of the support personnel that run that district. Yes, there may be some positions that are not truly necessary, but that is unlikely given the state of school funding.

    Don't just complain; be an advocate. Attend board meetings and really get to know your district. And if you see a real problem, work to correct it. Blanket whining never fixed anything.

  • worf McAllen, TX
    May 31, 2017 10:16 a.m.

    Wow! Some great comments given on this article.

    IMO, education can be simplified, and be more cost effective:

    * the role of a District Supt could be a part time job. It's that way with some school districts.
    * the role of principal can be shared by a committee of teachers.
    * reducing the amount of standardized testing would save funding, and increase instructional time.
    * charge parents a fifty dollar tuition per school year. This would increase ownership, and desire to help with their child's education.
    * an assistant shared between three teachers would lessen a teachers work load.

  • Husker1 Northern Utah County, UT
    May 31, 2017 9:03 a.m.

    Where does the money go?? Provo City School District has two mainstream high schools (plus one small alternate school), two middle schools, and 13 elementary schools. According to the district website, they have 101 employees in the district office. I challenge anyone to tell me what some of these people do. The job titles are ridiculous. Most of them make more than the average teacher and about a dozen make over $100k a year.

    Oh, and new teachers in Provo City School District are nowhere close to $40,000 a year.

  • Miss Bay Hyrum, UT
    May 31, 2017 7:42 a.m.

    Rules enacted by the state legislature discourage retired teachers from returning to the classroom. Currently, if you retire, you have to sit out two years before taking another teaching job, or you are penalized. If they were serious about keeping experienced and talented educators, they would change the rules to allow retirees to return to the classroom without penalty. However, they would rather hire new graduates with no experience and no institutional knowledge because they are so much cheaper.

  • Rhoule Orem, UT
    May 30, 2017 11:52 p.m.

    Look at the starting salaries and "growth" in the pay scale for Alpine School District. Near poverty levels. That's all you need to know

  • ERB Eagle Mountain, UT
    May 30, 2017 9:56 p.m.

    Too much money spent outside of the classroom.

  • Johnny Triumph Lahaina, HI
    May 30, 2017 9:28 p.m.

    I've said it before, for all the efforts they're taking to find and retain teachers they've yet to reach out to me. 20 years after graduating from BYU with an Elementary Ed degree and Utah license and yet no one has bothered me with a phone call. And while I'd love to teach I'm not sure I'll take a $100k paycut to change careers... This is a problem 30+ years in the making and it's going to be tough to catch up, especially if they're not reaching out to a list of anyone who has held a license in the state in the past 40 years...why not at least make those calls???

  • Mom and Love It San Juan, UT
    May 30, 2017 7:23 p.m.

    Here's a novel idea to retain teacher- respect teachers and their time. Forty hour work weeks would do wonders to retain teachers. These 60-80 hours work weeks, especially for new teachers, is one of the reasons teachers leave the field so soon.

    Also administration should demand students and parents (and themselves) respect teachers. Parents harassing teachers or students verbally abusing teachers should be called out on. Bullying is bullying and should not be tolerated in schools. We don't tolerate teachers name calling students, why do we say it's somehow okay the other way around.

    A little respect would do wonders, and it doesn't cost a thing.

  • Woodworker Highland, UT
    May 30, 2017 7:20 p.m.

    Fact: Businesses do well when their employees feel respected, justly compensated, and enjoy
    their work.
    Fact: School administrators and districts go out of their way to do just the opposite.

    I could go on to give many examples, from experience, of this, but many outside of teaching already know the truth of it.
    Okay, I'll give just one: Why is the Alpine School District Supt., the highest paid employee of the District, given money for his wardrobe? What does this say to the teacher who probably works more hours than he does and is paid less than half his salary?
    In conclusion, districts want to do anything but give teachers the respect they deserve. So sad.