Saturday, July 30, 2011

A word from a teacher on his yacht


I wanted to take a quick break from relaxing on my yacht off the coast of Bali to talk about the recent conversations in the media about teachers. My butler Alfred tells me that there is a growing voice that teachers are over compensated for their work. I was shocked to hear this. How shocked? I almost fell of my trained Polo Zebra, that's how shocked I was. Who in their right mind could suggest that teachers are over paid? 

I work very hard for 9 months of the year. My day starts at 8 in the morning and I'm out the door by 3 in the afternoon. Yes, you read that right. Teachers are forced to work until 3! As a high school teacher, I get to have 7 minute breaks every 48 minutes so a new group of kids can come in and fill out bubble testing sheets. It really is a nice way to break up the day.

I'm just glad my weekends are not cluttered with gross amount of paperwork so I can spend time with family and friends in Paris and Prague. I can just slide those bubble tests into a computer and wash my hands of the situation. I can't even imagine what it would be like to have to take work home. That's the kid's job, not mine as a teacher. How can I spend time choosing between an original Picasso or Monet when I need to provide "valuable feedback to ensure student growth"? That is what the tests are for. If the kid gets an A, he's smart. If the kid gets a B, he is smart, just not as smart as the kid who got an A. It's a very simple format that has been used for years. If it's not broke, why fix it?

I was told by my chef, who makes the best lobster bisque from home raised lobsters, that some people do not like the fact that teachers get their summers off. Summers off? Are you kidding me? If you call laying out around the pool in Vegas "Summer off", you are sadly mistaken. I need this time to relax and get ready for the next school year. Do you expect me to take more college classes to become a better teacher? Do you expect me to spend all of my free time going to conferences or revising my lessons in an effort to make them better? Maybe if you paid me like a billionaire instead of a millionaire. My personal masseuse just laughed really hard at that. 

I need to wrap this up because my jet is warming up and fuel is not cheap. As a teacher, I feel I make just enough to scrape by day to day. Cutting my compensation would be crazy! I would have to fire at least half of my gardening staff and most of my personal trainers. Teachers are people who have decided to spend their time educating the future of this country. It's not a fancy job, but we chose it because it was our calling. We get compensated a very fair wage that allows most of us to get by. Reforming education is a noble plan, but attacking teacher compensation doesn't seem like the right way to go. Just think of it this way, what is an education really worth to a child?

Feel free to comment below or send me a tweet at @TheNerdyTeacher. I will try and get back to you in between Tennis lessons with my buddy Pete and golf lessons with Jack.

- @TheNerdyTeacher