A Public School Teacher Speaks Out - And Response (2)

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Recently, some poorly informed folks are spreading misinformation from the Beacon Center website encouraging teachers to "quit the union.” It alleges our support of a state income tax and our radical left-wing agenda. 

The last time I checked, the state legislature determines how we are taxed. It's their job to adequately fund our public schools. They collect and redistribute public monies, not teachers or any other organization. 

In my district, Senator Bo Watson and Representative Gerald McCormick both received high marks from TEA during the last legislative session. Are they the left-wing radicals of whom Justin Owen and J.C. Bowman speak? I think not. 

In Hamilton County, the HCEA recommended County Mayor Jim Coppinger and recently elected Commissioner Randy Fairbanks.  These men are definitely not members of a radical left wing.  

When TEA or HCEA recommends a candidate, we do it because they're doing what's right for the students of Hamilton County and the state of Tennessee. It is not about partisan politics; it's about attracting and retaining good teachers for our public schools. The best interest of our students is our agenda. 

TEA and HCEA are made up of the qualified educators who teach in our public schools, not a "think tank" in another city or state.

Gil Highlander, Teacher

Hixson

* * *

Volkswagen can't have a union, Tennessee is a right to work state. 

School teachers make obscene salaries already. This is the issue up here in Knoxville - bloated school teacher salaries.

We gotta bust your union, and cut your bloated salaries. You make too much.

You're not concerned with the kids, you just use them as an excuse. Just ask Rhonda Thurman.

Donald Woods 
Knoxville 

* * *  

I am not sure how to respond to allegations that teacher's salaries are bloated and obscene.  This may be one of the dumbest sentences I have ever seen typed on the Chattanoogan.  I won't and can't speak for Knoxville, since I don't live there, but I do know that most of the teachers in Hamilton County are not making any kind of ridiculous salary.  Most of the teachers I know in this county hold other part-time jobs just to make ends meat.  Should they be willing and required to educate the future of America on even less than they make now?   

Why is that teachers are treated as if they don't deserve their modest salaries, but very little comment is made on an athlete getting a nine-figure salary?  Personally, I believe that none of the opinion article writers on this site would be able to do so without an educator helping them learn how to do this somewhere in their past.   

Please stop with the vilification of teacher salaries.  Everyone of you reading this owes thanks to at least one teacher (and likely many more) from your past.  In the grand scheme of salaries, most teachers make very little, but do very much.  Let them keep what they have earned.   

I am quite sure that no matter what your opinion, someone out there thinks you make too much money, too. 

Robert Parks
Chattanooga



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