Sunday, April 20, 2014
Teachers, Solidarity Forever, For the union makes us strong.
From the Talented and empathetic Lisa Mac: Sharing thoughts on an article about new teachers opting out of his or her respective union:*
Okay, first of all, if you opt out of the union, you still pay almost all the fees. Mine are about $1000 per year.I can only speak for my union, but they have secured a pretty great pay scale and raise. In GGUSD we have amazing benefits. All things were halted during the recession, all raises and pay increases, but I think that was across the country, so I don't complain. Now, things are picking up again.
When I started on my career track, I had just recovered from having most of my cervix cut out due to cervical cancer. Teaching was the only job I could think of that would have me firmly in the middle class, and have good medical benefits should the cancer come back (it didn't, thankfully!). I was going to become a psychologist. That was, and still is my passion. That being said, I am so grateful to be a teacher and have steady pay and benefits. It is the best thing that has ever happened to me. I live in a house with no jacks and no wheels, unlike my parents! Without middle class job opportunities, I can't imagine what this country will be like. There are seemingly less and less of them every year, and that scares the shit out of me.
I have already seen many talented peers leave the field due to various political issues- not enough pay (they were from wealthy families!), too much harassment from the district, or not enough agency to do their own thing. Thankfully(?) there are so many college grads finding no good jobs left that many of them are flooding into teaching, leaving our field quite impacted.
Solidarity Forever, For the union makes us strong.
*Here is the link to the article Lisa Mac wasn't responding to. http://tcfranciscullen.wordpress.com/2014/04/18/open-letter-to-teachers/