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I think that they are putting the money before the horse, to twist the saying. Teachers are generally not money-motivated at the core, although lack of money certainly kills motivation, and I certainly think that my service is worth $100K/year and have switched districts to earn a higher salary. I think that the project will not yield better results than a school with similar, lower-paid teachers, students and numbers. Research shows that the most effective learning takes place in small groups with focused lessons. If these "superstar" teachers know how to bring that about with 30 kids in their room, they might pull it off.`
The reason there is not a clearer distinction between the three questions of this survey is because they are poorly written. If the questions of this survey would have been written more distinctly and and thoughtfully, the results would have been clearer.
I believe that higher salaries could work but only in conjunction with two other things. One is to strip down the unnecessary obligatoins that so many teachers have to allow them to focus on the task at hand. The other is to raise standards for teachers. In more basic terms, make them work for it, pay them, and let them do their jobs.
At the current rate of pay and class-hours demanded, teachers are poorly paid. The goal is an educated populous, right? Then let's focus on that! It takes TIME to prepare GOOD class material and tests. It takes TIME to grade the results of the tests and reflect on it for a continued course of action. It takes TIME, folks!
If a teacher is pressed to be with a group of students every hour of the day for subsistence pay, they CANNOT perform well. Hire MORE teachers and pay them a salary that will take away the stress. Let's be real. If you are worried about your finances at home, will you be able to concentrate on your job? No! ...and, the future of the nation is in your hands. If you think not, think again. Education is FAR more important than we make it when it comes to time for paying for it. BUT everyone feels free to criticize the results. American needs to get real.
This is the solution: more teachers, lightened load for the ability to do a quality job, all for a salary that won't leave you worrying (subconsciously caught up in how you will survive) robbing you of concentration.
Just because teaching is often something people feel a passion to do, does not mean that you have the right to rob them by paying such a pitiful salary. Teachers make the nation. Teachers are important. Face the music, pull our wallets and buy a quality future. Why do bankers make such a handsome paycheck? Because they write their own.
What you value is what you put money into. I guess American wants to die as a culture. It keeps grousing about paying for education. Get over it.
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The key to improved student success is smaller class size. I see this every day. As someone who teaches 28 classes per week, I see the difference in achievement and behavior with classes of 20- versus 30+. You can individualize more with the smaller groups. It's the difference between having a group of individuals versus a mob. If they would just take all of the money being used for testing, changing reading and math curricula (sometimes every year!), useless staff development, top-heavy admininstration, etc., etc. and use it to have smaller class sizes, a lot of problems in education would be solved.
As a professional, I feel teachers have always been underpaid for the work completed. Over the past 30 years I have worked 50 to 55 hour weeks regularly without extra pay. In addition to help support my family, I worked most summers and taught evenings in addition to taking courses for licensing and expanding my teaching levels. A blanket increase in pay will not necessarily improve quality. However, if tied to an individual's experience and higher qualities/abilities, I feel this is a step in the right direction.
I agree with everything Mr. John Armstrong said except for the idea of the incorporation of computer into classrooms. Most learning reguir no computers. Although sometimes, if administered appropriately, the computer program can help, in real world, computer in classroom causes more problems than the benefits and ofter impedes the learning process.
There are many interesting and thought provoking arguments here. I do not necessarily believe that higher salaries will result in improved student achievement, but wouldn't it go a long way in establishing teaching as a top choice career/profession rather than a back-up plan. I have seen many qualified and engaging teachers leave the classroom, because the salary did not afford them the "luxury" of starting a family, buying a home, or the like. These individuals were not daunted by the amount of work that it takes to reach kids, and they really beat themselves up for leaving the profession of teaching. Throwing money at teachers won't solve all of the problems with teacher/student apathy, but our society does value money and all of the material things it brings. Maybe if we showed that we valued teachers a 10th of how we value athletes, actors, and "Spiedi" Celebrities, we could attract and keep dedicated individuals who could provide great educational experiences for students and a suitable life for their own families.
This program makes no sense. First, schools will never have the budget to pay higher salaries, and even if they had the money, there are not enough great teachers waiting in the wings. Even if the program is a wild success, it provides no workable model for improving our schools. We need to figure out how to take average teachers (the ones in the system now) and get them to deliver better results. We need changes in our culture to reduce behavior problems, and we need to incorporate computers into every classroom to take over many of the tedious aspects of teaching. With that kind of approach we could reduce costs and give kids a better education.