I learned that a person holds a value when it’s assumed in conversations without explanation or debate. Reading the news wires has revealed to me how we value teachers.
The Chicago school teacher’s strike is overtly about dollar fights. Personally, I think it’s absurd for any employee to demand guaranteed raises over the next few years – especially when they start way above averages, and our economy is headed toward the great unknown, including such attractions such as the fiscal cliff of Janaury 2013 and the Federal Reserve Board’s creation of $40billion per month.
However, such dollar topics are the expected chatter back and forth as unions deal with reality of state and city budgets that cannot print dollars like their Federal brethren.
My memorable quote from Yahoo report of the teacher strike is unrelated to salaries and benefits:
The teacher walk-off in the nation’s third largest school district has left families scrambling to find alternative childcare for the roughly 350,000 students who are affected by the strike.
It seems that comment, made tangentially without explanation, has matured to reflect a value in America. We really don’t hire our teachers to teach. School is an “alternative childcare”. We hire them to babysit. Uggh…