Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Next Time Someone Says…. Upon hearing that I teach, a new acquaintance said”How nice you get your summers off”. I think I’m going to spit nails at the next person who says that to me.
Lemme ‘splain:
During one of the neverending administrative meetings held this past week (during perfectly good planning time, I might add), I did the math. “What math?” you ask. Ahh but let me enlighten you.
Teachers work with students an average of around 60 hours a week, 36 weeks a year (this does not include the pre-service week or the built in planning days). Forty of those hours are at school, of course, and the rest are on teachers’ own time. (I know cuz I took a poll among my colleagues). That turns out to be 2160 hours per year. An average full time employee works 40 hours a week, 50 weeks of the year, which equals 2000 hours.
The hours aren’t that different, but the pay is. All 2160 hours are squeezed into a 36 week period which means I only get paid for 10 months out of the year. Why doesn’t society value what educators do enough to pay appropriately for it? Where do people get the idea that teaching is a cushy job with lots of time off?

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