Below is a playful (yet passionate) interpretation of the perception that teachers are nothing more than "glorified babysitters". The author, David Coffey from Spring Lake, hits a chord with me and some of the frustration I have felt (as of late) regarding the public's perception of teachers.
Enjoy and feel free to comment.
BTW... this article is starting to pop up in newspapers throughout the state. I found it at Mlive.com at this link.
WHAT IS A TEACHER WORTH?
"Full disclosure: I’m a teacher. My wife is a teacher. Both of my parents taught. And my maternal grandparents were teachers. I am aware I am biased on this issue. However, that does not negate the following facts.
I have read comments lately suggesting teachers are paid too much. Sometimes, the rationale behind these comments is that teachers are simply glorified babysitters. So let’s consider this for a minute. Babysitters make anywhere from $4-10 an hour. Let’s be conservative and use the lower amount. Classrooms now have about 25 kids per class. School runs from around 8 a.m. until 3 p.m., but teachers often get an hour planning and a luxurious 30-minute lunch. So conservatively, they work 5.5 hours. The school year is 180 days long. Doing the math I learned thanks to a teacher, that totals to $99,000 per year. Of course, we will have to pay someone else to do the planning, assessing and other duties that teachers do beyond the school day since that’s not in a babysitter’s job description.
Now I can hear some of you complaining that this is too much money given that you consider teachers part-time civic employees. So let’s consider paying teachers what we pay another part-time civic employee — a Michigan legislator. They make $79,650 per year and another $1,000 per month for expenses. And then there are the lifetime health benefits after working just six years.
But wait, there has been a lot of yelling recently that we must reduce government debt so our precious children and grandchildren will not be saddled with this burden. They are our future, after all, and an investment in ensuring that America will go on after us. A precious investment, you say? Then maybe we should pay teachers like investment bankers.
You get the point. A teacher is worth much more than the average $58,000 we pay them — even when you add in benefits. So the next time you think that teachers are paid too much or that their unions are unnecessary consider these examples. When we pay teachers as much as investment bankers or legislators or even babysitters then maybe the time for teacher unions has passed. But until then be grateful for the bargain.