A Teacher’s Pay vs. A Teacher’s Labor


It has been a long day, going for over 16 hours straight with only 2 hours relaxing. The remaining hours of the day the work did not stop. Between teaching classes, preparing news unit, helping students understand why they are failing class, pre-observation meetings, learning my honors classes broken up and lots of other stuff. Makes me remember that a teacher’s work is hardly ever done. Which is the inspiration of this blog.

A TEACHER’S PAY
A teacher is realistically paid for only 36 weeks of work a year. Contrary to what most people believe teachers are not paid for the time they on different breaks (Winter, Summer, Spring, etc.). In the past, teachers were only paid during the months that they working, so their paychecks were larger during those months, but they never got paid during the months they were off. This means that teachers would either have to save some of their earnings so they had money to pay their bills during the summer or take on a second job during the summer to pay the bills. Today most school districts distribute the teacher’s pay over the twelve months of a year, which makes it easier to pay bills while on break. Considering teachers only work 36 weeks a year, they get paid pretty well. But what most people do not realize is that the labor of a teacher does not always line up with the labor that they do during the course of the school year.

A TEACHER’S LABOR
Days like today are a prime example of the required labor of teachers during the school year. Many teacher works for hours after the end  “contract” time.  Many take the student assignments home to grade. Many spend weekends planning lessons that they have to teach the next week. Many teachers spend time out of school and their own money to professionally develop themselves more so they can become better teachers. Many teachers take on more responsibilities at school without the benefit of extra pay for the sake of making their school better. These are the things that most people do not see when they look at teachers and then complain about the amount of money they make.

What makes the general public’s attitude towards the teaching profession even sicker is that they expect these things out of teachers without giving the respect they deserve. Teachers are one of the few professions where the expectation is that they will work after the contract time is up. Your expected to work on your vacation to become a better teacher. You expected to play with new software or programs on the weekends. This expectation of teachers comes without the respect of working your ass off for nine months out of the year, making a fraction of what any other professional trained and licensed career would be earning a year.

This post will end with one of the best quote that describes the difference between teachers and all other professionals.

If a doctor, lawyer, or dentist had 40 people in his office at one time, all of whom had different needs, and some of whom didn’t want to be there and were causing trouble, and the doctor, lawyer, or dentist, without assistance, had to treat them all with professional excellence for nine months, then he might have some conception of the classroom teacher’s job.
– Donald D. Quinn

Questions? Comments? Concerns? Class dismissed!

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2 thoughts on “A Teacher’s Pay vs. A Teacher’s Labor

  1. Pingback: Teachers on vacation | Life with hiccups

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