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Monday, September 10, 2012

Fire the striking Chicago teachers... and ban them from the classroom for life

More than 400,000 schoolchildren in Chicago are without educators today after the teachers union there went on strike. I say "educators" lightly because by some accounts nearly 80% of eighth graders in Chicago public schools don't have adequate reading skills.

So these "teachers", who are already paid on average between $71,000 and $76,000 before benefits, and are only working nine months out of the year anyway, are going on strike because a 16% pay raise apparently isn't enough. These people's starting salary is $50,000.

Chicago is paying an insane amount of money out of the public treasury and getting some piss-poor results from it. So who the hell are these "educators" to demand more pay?

Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel should take some real leadership initiative and order every teacher back into the classroom within 48 hours, under penalty of being banned for life from teaching in the city's public schools. Just as President Reagan fired thousands of air traffic controllers who went on strike in 1981. I don't doubt that there are many sincere and dedicated teachers out there looking for work and who would be exceedingly satisfied to take those positions... and for a far more sane rate of pay, at that.

Would Mayor Emanuel have the courage to defy the teachers union like that?

Never mind answering that question. I was being facetious.


Kristen said...

Everything I'm reading says 1) it's 350,000 students not in school today, not over 400,000, and 2) it's not mainly an issue of pay (though that is part of it), but of job security. A new program is evaluating teachers based on how their students do on standardized tests.

And remember while $71,000 seems like a lot, Chicago has a higher cost of living than NC or VA.

That all being said, I was never a fan of teacher unions. Teachers should teach because they want to educate students, not because of the money.

Chris Knight said...

I'm seeing everything from 350,000 to 400,000 students, with most reports going toward the higher figure. Which I've never understood how a modern school system wouldn't know the precise number of students who are in its schools...