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



Fruit Basket Turnover

I have been teaching for 21 years now, so I’ve been through my share of school leaders. Every one of them taught me something important. Whether it was Don Bishop from Red Bank High School who, after almost 30 years at Red Bank, taught me to invest in the longevity of my career, Wade Kelly who taught me to thoroughly weigh options before making a decision, Gail Chuy who taught me ... (click for more)

Domestic Violence And Lost Focus - And Response

As a past victim of domestic violence, I am acutely aware of how serious this problem is. I am sorry that the Stone family has to have their personal drama played out to the world at 5:00, 5:30, and 6:00 every evening.   While the public is being entertained by the drama of all this, the real problems in this city are not getting the attention they deserve.  The shootings ... (click for more)

CBL & Associates Stockholder Accuses Chattanooga-Based Mall Owner Of Security Fraud

A stockholder of CBL & Associates is suing the Chattanooga-based mall owner in Chattanooga Federal Court, claiming its officials artificially inflated the value of the company's stock. Tommy French, of Baton Rouge, La., brought the action against CBL, President Stephen Lebovitz and Vice President Farzana Mitchell. He claims that CBL officials made false and misleading ... (click for more)

Carmody Found Guilty Of First-Degree Felony Murder; Sentenced To Life In Prison

Patrick Carmody was sentenced to life in prison after being found guilty of first-degree felony murder and especially aggravated robbery in Judge Barry Steelman’s courtroom on Friday. He was charged with the slaying of 21-year-old Chance LeCroy on Sept. 9, 2010. The state’s account of the incident claimed that Carmody, Ronald Pittman, and Billy Bob Partin traveled ... (click for more)

Baylor Beats GPS Again For Second Straight D-II Title

MURFREESBORO – Baylor coach Kelli Smith was feeling no pain here at the Starplex Field No. 3 Friday afternoon after her team had beaten GPS by a 9-1 final for its second-straight D-II state softball crown, but that wasn’t the case late Thursday night. Smith, who now has two state titles as a Baylor player and eight as their coach, spent more than three hours in the local emergency ... (click for more)

Meigs Bounces Back, Beats Silverdale, 8-5, For State Class A Softball Title

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Either Meigs County or Silverdale was going home with a state championship trophy on Friday. Pushed to the limit by the spunky Lady Seahawks in a 6-0 loss – all six runs were unearned – the Lady Tigers responded in the Class A championship game with an 8-5 victory and claimed the school’s first state softball title. “I’m on top of the world,” Meigs ... (click for more)