Tuesday, June 21, 2011

First Police, then Firemen, now Teachers...Oh My!

"The city that works" to continuously punish those who contribute the most to this city is at it again.  Not too long ago, the police department was the target, then the firefighters, and now it's the teachers.  All of a sudden it is the teachers who "gave the students the shaft".  Well, I am here to dispel some myths and impart some truths...

The Myth...

Teachers in the Chicago Public Schools  GET a 10-week paid summer vacation.

The Truth...

Teachers in the Chicago Public Schools do NOT get a 10 week paid summer vacation.

The Board of Education  keeps part of our salary for the 10 1/2 months we work; they get the interest and make money on our money and then "ever-so-kindly" give us OUR money that we already earned back during our time off. We don't get paid when we don't work, just like anyone else.  But unlike others, we have to wait to get our hard-earned money that was held hostage throughout the school year.

The Myth...

CPS has the shortest school day and we need to extend the day to get in all the instructional minutes.

The Truth...

Mandatory breakfast has arrived this year in full force at CPS which takes place during the first class period.  It used to be students could come to school 15 minutes early and "eat for free", but now they don't even has to make that effort to come early to get breakfast.  EVERYONE  gets a "free" breakfast now on their way to class.  So, instead of teaching reading for a full class period, we are now spending at least 20 of those minutes with the students eating/wasting breakfast food in the classroom.  If we were allowed to teach during instructional time, we'd have enough minutes. If we weren't wasting so much money, in this case in the form of food, we would be able to get our contractual raise.

The Myth...

The students need to be in school for longer days and a longer school year, so they can be safe.

The Truth...

It's true but unfortunate that many children today do not value human life or the rights of their fellow man.    Many of the "student-related" crimes happen at night or on the weekends.  We can increase the school day/year as much as you want, but the fact of the matter remains...if someone is going to do someone harm, they will find a way.  Unless we keep the students "locked in 24/7"   (which is the job of the prisons, not the teachers) they will have the opportunity to do harm if that is their intent.

In the end,  the teachers' goals are that the children are learning at least the basics..reading, writing, and arithmetic.  Unfortunately, they also learn..

ü  Dependency on "the system" from a very young age.

ü  Self-Esteem is great...Self-reliance is out along with self-respect.

ü  Schools/teachers are given more responsibilities than their own parents.

It is not the teachers who are giving our students the shaft;
it's the system.

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