Letter to the editor: Way off base on teachers

Posted 9/25/18

Way off base on teachers How is it possible that there are educated adults in this country who still believe teachers work less than full time as professional educators? I was appalled to read …

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Letter to the editor: Way off base on teachers

Posted

Way off base on teachers

How is it possible that there are educated adults in this country who still believe teachers work less than full time as professional educators? I was appalled to read nonsense to the contrary in a recent letter to the editor, titled “No need for tax hike.” To base an argument on an assumption — that teachers work eight hours a day, 40 hours per week — is naïve and ridiculous. Unlike many other jobs, daily and weekly hours required to be an effective teacher aren’t limited to contract hours; much of the work takes place at home, at night and on the weekends.

Teachers spend most of their day with students, with a fraction of the day allotted for plan time, often spent in staff meetings, collaborative learning teams, student-support meetings, IEP and 504 meetings, parent correspondence, and planning, with a 20-25 minute lunch (as long as making copies, parent communications or helping a struggling student don’t take first priority). This leaves updating online student-support sites, conference planning, designing of lessons and activities, planning, and grading assignments for 120-160 students for the evenings, nights, and weekends, outside of the 40-hour work-week. In fact, look around at your next youth event — you’ll probably see a teacher in the bleachers grading papers. 

And by the way, taking the nine weeks of summer into account, which is often used as planning time and educator training on their own dime, the total number of hours worked by teachers per year far exceeds full-time employment status.

Eric Waggoner

Parker

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