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Why I can't give up S & C

Original post made by PUSD teacher, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on May 28, 2009

I don't expect a sympathetic ear by posting this here, but I feel compelled to tell you the honest truth from one teacher's perspective. My husband worked in the private sector and has lost his job. He has always been the "alpha earner" in our household. If the union came to me and said "will you give up S & C"? I'd like to say "yes" on principle, but the reality is that we are depending on my income alone and doing everything in our power not to lose our house. I haven't told my colleagues this, and they may very well be having financial strains that I know nothing about.

I've read these posts and have seen that many people here think teachers live in this alternate universe untouched by the troubles the private sector is feeling. I just want people to understand that this one teacher is thankful for her S & C raise, not because she's "greedy", but because she needs it to help her family stay afloat.

Maybe there are more teachers in my situation than people realize, and maybe our reasons for holding onto S & C are not all that different from your reasons for holding onto your $233.

Comments (65)

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Posted by Can I ask?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Can I ask how many additional credits, certifications or post-graduate degree(s) you've earned to go the next column as this is a requirement for going to the next column? And how much you spent out of pocket to gain this additional education? As COLA is gone and will continue to be gone for the foreseeable future, I wouldn't feel guilty or apologize despite the blog rumor that step and column are the same as "guaranteed raises". And frankly, I don't see how S&C will survive. There's no more money.


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Posted by PUSD Teacher
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 9:56 pm

I don't have all my financial paperwork in front of me, but so far I've taken out around $10,000 in loans in order to pursue my Master's Degree in Education (on top of my BA and credential). I'm currently in the BA+ 45 column and when I finish two more classes I'll move to the BA + 60 column, where I stand to make about $3,000 more a year (assuming S & C still happens) for the remainder of my career. I was planning on taking those two classes this summer, but if I am not guaranteed that raise, the money is better spent on my mortgage. Perhaps the money is better spent on my mortgage regardless, and I should just work retail this summer (if anyone's hiring, that is)! The longer I wait to take those units, though, the less time I'll have to recoup my education expenses and benefit financially from the pay increase. Like many people, we're reevaluating our financial priorities from what they were in November.

I predict that someone will respond with a comment about how teachers should be altruistic and pursue higher education for the sake of bettering their craft. I agree with that to a certain extent, but understand that every Tuesday and Thursday night that I went to class, I was missing out on eating dinner with my family and putting my kids to bed. Frankly, if that financial incentive wasn't there, I probably would've chosen to be with my family.


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Posted by no more teacher raises
a resident of Downtown
on May 28, 2009 at 10:24 pm

You seem to think that your financial situation should persuade us to all step forward and hand you a raise. How about this? Get a job during your summer vacation. When your annual days worked begin to approximate those that a normal person works you can think about taking some time off. While it is sad that your husband is out of work do you think that all of us are earning to our full potential in these tough times? Why don't I just tell the voters to contribute to my income to make up what I have lost to the economic downturn.
It is your selfish attitude that turned me against the parcel tax. When the tax fails you will have to deal with likely cuts to your pay and benefits. Cuts that are long overdue.


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Posted by shiny happy people holding hands
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 10:29 pm

Wow! Wasn't "no more teacher raises" just a ray of sunshine?

Serious Haters on this site!


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Posted by Have empathy but still voting NO
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 10:30 pm

Sorry to hear about your husband's job. I don't think you are greedy and I have compassion for your financial situation. I have respect for you wanting to take care of your family. I understand why you want the S&C. Having said all of that, you need to understand that others in this community (me) are in he same situation as you. However even if that was not the case (in other words if I was well off) I would hold the same opinion I am about to voice.

The money people earn is their money just as the money you earn is yours. Regardless of how well off they are, they can decide what to do with their money. It belongs to them.

Perhaps it was not your intent but it appears you are making the case that other people should support G so you can keep your home or take care of your family. If so that says your priority is somehow more important then other people's priority. Do we not each get to decide how we prioritize our needs and fund those needs with money earned (not taken by taxes) Those people are not responsible for your home or for your family by taxation.

Now if they elect to give you their money by choice then that is charity at its best. To take it from them by taxes (ie: G) is stealing. And that applies equally to those who are well off. Its their money. Let them decide how they want to spend it. Too many people today look to others to solve their problems.

Again my heart goes out to you. I hope an extended family member would lend you a hand and or someone from your church community if you belong to a local church. I am voting NO for the very same reasons you would like this community to vote yes. My family...my priority.



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Posted by my interpretation
a resident of Birdland
on May 28, 2009 at 10:35 pm

The money people earn is their money just as the money you earn is yours. Regardless of how well off they are, they can decide what to do with their money. It belongs to them.

I didn't see her post as a plea for Measure G. I think she was explaining why she doesn't want to give up her negotiated salary, which the district is bound to pay her by contract. In that sense it's her money, and she's saying that her reason for not giving it up is the same as yours for not voting "yes" on G. I don't think you can call her selfish if she's using the same logic as you to justify her reason for not handing over a chunk of her income.



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Posted by PUSD teacher
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 10:42 pm

To clarify, I wasn't posting about Measure G (which is why I didn't even mention it). I think that assumption was made just because I'm a teacher.

Good night, folks! :)


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Posted by Janet
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 10:43 pm

shiny happy people holding hands says "Serious Haters on this site!"

Please...just because they disagree w/ you they are a hater????

Make it an emotional argument by calling someone a "hater" tells me you are one of those people who makes decisions based on their "feelings" and not w/ their intellect. That has gotten this community as well as this country in the mess it is in today.

I've read these post (not all of them) and this is not the 1st one I read that calls someone a hater when logic is applied as the solution to the problem at hand.

shiny happy people holding hands needs to behave like an adult and that starts w/ thinking and talking like one. Your anger is far more detrimental to t his community and these posts than any NO vote on G.

BTW, I am a NO vote.




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Posted by sorry bout that, really
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on May 28, 2009 at 10:44 pm

I am truly sorry about your situation. A few things though and they are not meant to be mean, or angry.
1. If you truly would be willing to give up your S&C if your husband had a job would you give it up once he gets a new one?
2. Have you ever refused any other previous raises when your husband was working?
3. In this town do you think a tax paid job should be able to support an entire family when most struggle with two incomes?
4. Do you appreciate that many people here are in similar situations and can't petition for more money?
5. Do you know it seems like a small bit of money but if I could just get $1 from each person in town my family would be doing much, much better?
6. It would help you but would it help your students? The ones this is said to be helping?
7. I know you are in a bad spot, and I'm sorry, but are you really more in need of charity compared to so many others out there?
8. That many No on G people don't want to hurt anybody, including themselves, but want the district to do a better job with the money they spend before getting more?
9. That you really can't go anywhere else and teach public school and make more?
You probably think I'm a jerk but I'm really sorry that your husband lost his job. I just want to say that G is no meant to be your husband's unemployment insurance. It is meant to help students. Your story is tragic but also common right now. If you support G do it for the students and classroom sizes, not sympathy for teachers.


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Posted by Have empathy but still voting NO
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 28, 2009 at 10:58 pm

"I don't think you can call her selfish if she's using the same logic as you to justify her reason for not handing over a chunk of her income."

Dear "my interpretation": IF you were referring to my post I made it a point NOT to call her "selfish. " (If we can agree selfish and greedy are the same)

My quote: "I don't think you are greedy "

The "chunk of her income" she may be asked to turn over is no different then the pay cuts and days cut from work that others in this community had to do to keep their jobs. People within this community (even the "rich" ones) should not have to bail the teachers out, just as they should not have to bail me out.

Everyone is making adjustments and everyone needs to look elsewhere (family, church, extra jobs outside the profession)to address their personal needs.


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Posted by Maybe
a resident of Ironwood
on May 28, 2009 at 11:01 pm

Maybe I'm to in to this Measure G thing but how can you claim at this time this post isn't about G? If as a teacher you comment on the 'underfed horses' post nobody would mention G. You explained why you need a raise, that you are a teacher and "holding onto S & C are not all that different from your reasons for holding onto your $233." Sounds like measure G talk. Could I be wrong, were you talking about another $233 people were holding onto? Both sides on this issue bother me, but honesty and thoughtfulness are always respectable. Your lack of honesty about your post not being about G makes me question the whole story. Like in court, if you lie once, everything else can be taken as a lie.


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Posted by 2 cents
a resident of Country Fair
on May 28, 2009 at 11:07 pm

"sorry bout that, really" and "Maybe" said or asked it all for me. "Have empathy but still voting NO" spoke the truth for many and did so respectfully I think.


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Posted by PUSD teacher
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 7:24 am

Hi again,
I realize now that I must be an inarticulate writer, and for that I apologize. My post was not meant to be interpreted as a plea for Measure G. Rather, I was trying to find common ground with people like"Have empathy..." by saying that I understand why you're voting "no", but please don't vilify my for voting "no" (to cuts from my current contract) either. My intent was to convey that teachers are not insulated from the recession, and we are grappling with the same financial worries that many of you are.

Whew! So many questions and I have only a few minutes.

1. If you truly would be willing to give up your S&C if your husband had a job would you give it up once he gets a new one?

Hmmm... Tough question. I'm not sure, to be honest. I know the "right answer" here is "yes", but I hesitate. Reason: I took out a $10,000 student loan based on the belief that I'd get the column raise. It's a loan I still have to pay back. I guess it would depend on how much my husband makes in his new job.


2. Have you ever refused any other previous raises when your husband was working?

There's never been a recession since I started working. This is the first time this has been an issue. Have you refused raises when they were offered to you for no apparent reason?? This is an unfair, loaded question I think.

3. In this town do you think a tax paid job should be able to support an entire family when most struggle with two incomes?

No, that's why my husband and I both intend to work. We never set out to be a one-income family based on a teacher's salary.

4. Do you appreciate that many people here are in similar situations and can't petition for more money?

I'm not petitioning for more money. I'm asking you to understand why I'm not signing off money that the district is contractually obligated to pay me.

5. Do you know it seems like a small bit of money but if I could just get $1 from each person in town my family would be doing much, much better?

Ok, maybe you should petition everyone to do that then. They can only say no!

6. It would help you but would it help your students? The ones this is said to be helping?

Well, if you're talking about Measure G. In fairness, S & C makes up $2million of an $18.7 million deficit for the 09-10 school year. So, I'd say any money the district can get its hands on stands to help teachers AND students.

7. I know you are in a bad spot, and I'm sorry, but are you really more in need of charity compared to so many others out there?

Again, I personally wasn't asking for charity. I was just explaining why I need my contract fulfilled.

8. That many No on G people don't want to hurt anybody, including themselves, but want the district to do a better job with the money they spend before getting more?

I understand that.

9. That you really can't go anywhere else and teach public school and make more?

Was I complaining about low pay? I don't think I was. I left another school district and came here because it IS a great district.


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Posted by I have loans too
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on May 29, 2009 at 7:50 am

I took about $12,000 in loans for my graduate degree, was gone 4 nights a week to class and studied the other nights & weekends while I worked the 9-5 during the day without any guarantee of a wage increase or higher-paying job. I gave up time with my kids and husband too.

Matter of fact, my husband's employer told him 3 months after I finished my degree that he would have to move in order to keep his job! I moved with those loans and no source of income for a while.

I'm tired of teachers thinking that increases in education automatically grant increases in pay! This is one of the problems of S&C.


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Posted by observer
a resident of Birdland
on May 29, 2009 at 8:20 am

I'm tired of teachers thinking that increases in education automatically grant increases in pay!

They only think that because they were hired with a contract that told them that. Don't hate them for relying on a contract.


So, here are some thoughts from a moderate observer: On the one hand, people in the community are calling Measure G "charity" and getting mad that they're being asked to pay it to support programs in the schools (and, yes, to help PUSD honor it's contractual obligations with the teachers). On the other hand, teachers are seeing a pay cut from their existing contract as the community asking for "charity" to support programs in the schools (in a community where they may or may not live). Neither side budges. They both have the same mentality of "why should I give when I have struggles, too?" coupled with "the grass is greener" mentality... the net result: the programs go away.

I'm voting "yes" on Measure because I can afford to, and I want to see these programs preserved. Others can't afford to... or they don't value the programs... or they don't want to on principle. Any way you slice it, it's a personal choice. I can understand why others are voting no. We'll just see what the election brings! Whatever happens, I think we are at a turning point for public education in our community.


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Posted by No on G
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 8:54 am

observer,

You said, "I'm voting "yes" on Measure because I can afford to, and I want to see these programs preserved. Others can't afford to... or they don't value the programs... or they don't want to on principle. Any way you slice it, it's a personal choice."

I do see what you are saying, however, I would like to add that for myself, voting No is difficult for me with children. I may or may not be able to afford it, but the point is the "personal choice", as you have called what you are doing, is not based on personal issues for me. I guess that is the difference between you and I. I am voting No, because it is wrong to and I want to send a message that I expect the district to change.

How much worse will it get if we don't?

So based on your stance, if you could afford it, would you now invest with Burney Madoff since you now know what he is capable of? If the percentage of your income could be lost without ruining you? Would you be willing to let him handle your money still? Isn't that also a personal choice?

I think the point is, if we do vote by personal choice alone we are not interested in the greater good of our community. Making a No vote when we have kids in the district is not a decision base on "personal" issues.

I am voting, as you also said, "...on principle". I hope you will vote that way also.


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Posted by No on G
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 8:56 am

I meant to say, "I am voting No, because it is wrong NOT to and I want to send a message that I expect the district to change."


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Posted by Maybe
a resident of Ironwood
on May 29, 2009 at 9:07 am

PUSD teacher - I see you answered 'sorry bout that, really' questions which in a sense think they were meant to be more rhetorical thought provoking questions, not can you fill in the blank. Most of your answers can also be rebutted pretty easily. But you can't answer my comment about you saying this post is not about G. Because when you lie, it's hard to defend. I repeat "You explained why you need a raise, that you are a teacher and "holding onto S & C are not all that different from your reasons for holding onto your $233." Sounds like measure G talk. Could I be wrong, were you talking about another $233 people were holding onto? Both sides on this issue bother me, but honesty and thoughtfulness are always respectable. Your lack of honesty about your post not being about G makes me question the whole story. Like in court, if you lie once, everything else can be taken as a lie."


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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on May 29, 2009 at 9:11 am

I have loans too -
"I'm tired of teachers thinking that increases in education automatically grant increases in pay! This is one of the problems of S&C."

I couldn't agree more. In the private sector advancements in education do not automatically lead to a salary increase like they do in the school district. You have to actively seek an employer willing to appreciate and pay for the added value you bring.

PUSD teacher took out $10k in loans for a guaranteed $3k increase per year. Boo F'ing Hoo, Her ROI is less than four years.

I think the greatest problem I have in reading the responses from those representing the school district is how disremoved they appear to be from what goes on in the private sector during an economic downturn. The sacrifices the community is asking of the district are no where near those being made by those in the private sector. We appreciate, value, and respect their contributions to the community and want to insulate them from the economic realities as much as possible.....but the general sentiment in response to what we're asking just shows how far removed they really are. And in some sense, unappreciative of the efforts of the community in sheltering them from the worse of the economic downturn.


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Posted by no more teacher raises
a resident of Downtown
on May 29, 2009 at 9:44 am

For PUSD Teacher -- you really need to get out of your insulated, tenured world. I worked for a company for more than 25 years and gave up tens of thousands of dollars over many contracts in order to have a better retirement plan. In one short year they managed to cut my pay by 50% and dissolve the entire retirement plan. And I had a contract too! You are NOT guaranteed your S & C raises just by virtue of a contract. Check out the rules of the bankruptcy court if you think your contract will prevail when the district is forced, through their own wasteful spending, to file for bankruptcy.
Everyone has suffered in this recession. You alone do not deserve to be spared by virtue of working for a system that has "guaranteed" you employement, benefits and retirement income on the backs of the taxpayers. Your pay grows, your workdays are less, and you keep coming back to the trough of public tax dollars with the justification that you should not have to give up anything "because you counted on it and it is in your contract". Your bills, your lifestyle, your reduced incomes are YOUR business. It is not MY job to guarantee the payment of your mortgage.
This may or may not be an argument about measure G in your eyes but it cannot anything else to most of us. Measure G is designed to give you those S & C raises, $15 mil worth in the next 4 years. Most of us are saying that enough is enough. If the district is forced into bankruptcy then you can re-read your contract and see just how much money you will really get. $3,000 a year for the rest of your career, for only this one column increase, is just plain greedy in this economy. The teachers were not willing to give up anything, as you have explained at length, so I have voted NO to all of your raises.


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Posted by parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on May 29, 2009 at 10:00 am

I see today that the governor is proposing 5% pay decreases from all state workers. That will be the reality to balance the budget there. So while everybody else is getting pay cuts because of the economy, our district is still pushing for raises? Shame on you.


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Posted by Not Right Now
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on May 29, 2009 at 10:32 am

PUSD Teacher:

Thank you for your post and putting yourself out there. I know, first hand, how difficult things must be for you and your family at this time and I can only sympathize with you.

I agree with you, PUSD has a collective bargaining agreement with your union that give's teachers raises based on years of service and CEU's. I know it's frustrating when monies you are rightfully entitled to, because you kept up your side of the agreement, are in jepardy of being taken away. I'm a firm believer that contracts should not be broken.

However, re-negotiation of that contract must be considered. I'm not a proponent of you losing S&C for the life of the tax, but I do believe a new contract should reflect a certain percentage of decrease in Step and a certain percentage of decrease in Column for the next X amount of years.

I have learned so much about PUSD and the Board through this PW venue. Gone are the day's that I simply cast an ambiguous vote for board members based on a few pieces of information. I will take the time to learn about each candidate and decide if they are the right choice. Also, I'm certain I'll never miss another board meeting and I will be watching the PUSD and the board....like a hawk...!

I am voting to "hold onto my $233.00", not because I don't want you to receive your S&C, but because, as you know, the PUSD is broken and must be fixed. I will be watching this reform closely, and as the mother of 3 young children, I will be a very vocal participant in this process.


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Posted by Throw some empathy my way please...
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 10:43 am

Here's my situation:

I've got $96,321 in student loan remaining to repay

I bought a home in Ptown for $920,000 in 2008 and now it's worth $730,000

I have 4 children and their after school programs and activities cost us $3000/month

Groceries alone cost a minimum of $2500/mo.



Both my wife and I are struggling to make ends meet. I even took on a second job recently since neither of us are getting bonuses these days.

How about throwing some of those empathy my way???


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Posted by exactly
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on May 29, 2009 at 11:03 am

Exactly. There are soooo many of these stories. Throw in, "But what about the Children in your community you are going to neglect? They will now be poorly educated, not go to college, and be as great as they could be if you gave us more money. These poor underprivileged Pleasanton kids need help. Oh, and this will hurt your home value." Bam, you have an argument that they need money more than anyone. Shoot, make a measure for us like G and have the money go to Oakland or other local areas where educational standards are horrible, and the kids are in need of food and clothing and I'll vote yes. We need to save the upper class! Whatever. Both sides are completely self interested and group 'A' is trying to argue to group 'B' on the other side it's in their best interest to do as group 'A' want for themselves. How long before someone retorts with, 'So do want us to be like Oakland?'.


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Posted by Another district
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 11:18 am

I was talking to a teacher friend of mine in another district about Measure G.

Their district is not able to get any additional tax passed because of their community cannot handle more taxes with mostly blue collar workers.

The teacher's union voted to take a 5% cut across the board and freeze all raises (ALL RAISES, including S&C, COLA, benefits) to keep everyone's job in place. The teachers accepted a joint sacrifice to keek everyone employed, with benefits, and to keep the classroom & department structure the same.

They all realized that if teachers are cut and classroom sizes grow, they were going to be making less each hour anyway because of the additional work involved.

As a parent and as a community member, I have written those involved to say I want to see concessions on wages and on those administration benefits. Some of those concessions will make a big financial impact and some of those concession will make an emotional impact towards keeping as many programs in place as possible.

Essentially lack of cutbacks will defeat Measure G, not the communities inability to pay the additional $233 per year.


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Posted by julie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 2:15 pm

julie is a registered user.

PUSD Teacher, you were brave to post in this crowd! I'm sorry that only "my interpretation" seems to have understood what you were trying to say.

She wasn't asking for anyone's empathy or pity, so there was no need to engage in trying to "one up" her situation. She's not asking for a raise, she's simply explaining why she wants to *keep* the raise that was promised to her in a contract. That's all. And by the way, sometimes it's not just the economy that harms a person's financial well being - it's their own poor decision making! I for one cannot imagine racking up almost 100k in student loans. And bonuses by nature cannot be counted on - a person should never budget *ass*uming they will get a bonus. I won't throw empathy toward a person who "bit off more than they could chew". I stopped at 2 children, even though I'd have loved to have more, because I couldn't afford more. I'm betting that you already had some major loans to pay back when you started having kids - something else I'd have never done. Check out Dave Ramsay's book: Total Money Makeover...you need it!


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 29, 2009 at 4:18 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

I thought the post was fair. The State has requirements that teachers have to fulfill in order to be employed in the career of their choice. So I can understand the desire for column raises. Step raises to me are a different matter because they don't reward anything substantial.

The larger discussion is what we, as a society, demand of those employed as teachers. Our current system doesn't really seem to encourage anything specific. The salary schedule for certificated, for example, has columns related to educational units earned, but education in what? All we seem to be encouraging is for teachers to go out and spend their own money in order to get raises. I'm sure there's an industry out there that supports that. Another question this brings up is, do we even need teachers with advanced degrees teaching elementary subject matter?

There's some statistic (I don't have time to look up the details on it) about how 1 in 3 biology teachers believe that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time. How do step and column raises fix a problem like that?


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Posted by Russell
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 29, 2009 at 6:05 pm

@Throw some

"Groceries alone cost a minimum of $2500/mo..."

Have you thought about talking to a financial advisor? What on earth could be costing that much?

@Stacey

"1 in 3 biology teachers believe that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time"

What, you're saying they didn't live at the same time? ;-)

I somehow doubt that if you surveyed PUSD biology teachers you'd get the same result.

" Another question this brings up is, do we even need teachers with advanced degrees teaching elementary subject matter?"

I think it helps in science in mathematics, yes. I think I understand elementary physics better from having studied advanced physics in graduate school.


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Posted by karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 6:09 pm

Wow! Did Stacey get it right! I couldn't agree more. After 20 years of raising kids - and my youngest will soon head off to college- I don't see any point in advanced degrees for most teachers. I have seen a number of top-notch teachers who really didn't need any more college units to continue teaching at a high level. And...I've seen way too many @#$ teachers who accumulated credits/salary increases, only to thow erasers at honors class kids, run out of classes crying, complain about personal problems to young children, procrastinate, leave school every day at 2:55, expect parents to teach kids their lessons at night after dinner, become really lazy about correcting papers etc. etc. Boy, I could go one about this. We need better teachers than that and our kids are not served by knee-jerk contracts. This is the beginning of changing the system and putting a dose of reality into it. And...by the way, in my humble opinion...the district administration needs to be upgraded. A lot of money has been wasted. It's time to correct that.


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Posted by Russell
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 29, 2009 at 6:11 pm

@Stacey

"I'm sure there's an industry out there that supports that. "

A well known and very profitable semiconductor manufacturer paid in full for my MS level electrical engineering classes and gave me a bonus at the end of it. I haven't found that to be unusual at all, as every company I've worked for had a tuition reimbursement program, even VC funded start-ups.


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 6:37 pm

Russell-
After 30 years in the semiconductor industry, I have seen a number of companies with tuition reimbursement programs as well but they expect comensurate expertise in return...and when they don't get it, they will tell the under-performers to take their belongings out of the building immediately and not come back. Teachers are never let go for under-performing unless they do something truly egregious or illegal.


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Posted by resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 7:19 pm

So your argument for not postponing raises is that some of your household income comes from the private sector, so you are just as screwed as we are?


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Posted by My 2/100
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 7:43 pm

Stacey,

>....do we even need teachers with advanced degrees teaching elementary subject matter?

Why, yes. Yes we do.


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 8:12 pm

Well, no. No, we don't.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 29, 2009 at 8:33 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

My 2/100,

OK, so why? Isn't it enough to have a credential and a bachelor's degree?

Russell,

Certainly, if someone is going to be teaching specific subjects like that, I'd want them to be experts in the subject matter and pay them for that. Our salary schedule doesn't seem to provide that kind of incentive?


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Posted by My 2/100
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 8:58 pm

Stacey,

The question is absurd - anyone rational person would want their child's teacher to be a subject matter expert. A bachelor's plus a credential are the MINIMUM academic requirements - hopefully our teachers strive for more than the bare minimum.

My expectation is that teachers stay current in their field, and ideally they would have had some exposure in their subject at the graduate level. Wouldn't you expect that an AP calculus teacher (teaching a course that, after passing a test, grants college units?) have at least a master's in math? Ideally, teachers would be inquisitive enough to be lifelong learners, and WANT to take graduate credit.

Some of the best teachers I have been exposed to are second career people, with graduate degrees in the field they are teaching. It is more than reasonable to compensate them for their academic training.

I can turn the question back at you: are you seriously saying that the education bar for teachers should be as low as the basic requirement for a credential?


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 10:17 pm

Having a Master's Degree does not mean a teacher is effective and compensation should not be automatically based on having an advanced degree.

The degree is not a measure of performance and what we are all looking for in our teachers is effective performance and resultant learning.

Performance/compensation should be judged on concrete results with students and community reviews. Something like this already happens on an informal basis at every school when parents request particular teachers. The community knows the good teachers. It's not a secret at any school. There are great teachers whom we all want for our kids and there are others we really want to avoid at all costs. Teachers seem to not wish to acknowledge this reality.


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Posted by Is it just me?
a resident of Birdland
on May 29, 2009 at 10:34 pm

I went to school here and graduated Amador in 1991. Was it just me or does anyone else remember that the best teachers were usually the younger ones that still had a passion for teaching? Some older ones were good to, don't get me wrong. Yet many tenured teachers were passing out the same old homework assignments they had given my older brothers, and had kind of checked out. They were more set in their ways and had a less fluid style that was more adaptable and understanding of the younger generation. I don't know there educational levels but can't say for sure if that mattered. Like with coaching, Larry Bird was a great player not a great coach. I want a good teacher not a good student. I don't remember any of them not understanding the subject matter they were teaching, or being unable to answer questions. I'd say raise the starting salaries and lower the raises.


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Posted by Have empathy but still voting NO
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 11:08 pm

M 2/10 says "It is more than reasonable to compensate them for their academic training."

I totally disagree w/ that assumption, and I think therein lies part of t he problem.

No, it is NOT "more than reasonable" that people should be compensated for their "academic training." They should be compensated for what they produce.

A good orthodontist will make more money if he can straighten teeth compared to one who can't. Both have the same "academic training". Yet the "good" one will be compensated more because he/she produces more!

Not all things are equal. And that's the problem w/ the unions. They try to make everyone equal. They compensate the "bad" just as much as they compensate the "good". Neither has to produce to be compensated.

A good teacher should be compensated by what she produces not because of her advance degree.




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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 11:29 pm

Have Empathy: I absolutley agree with you.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 30, 2009 at 8:52 am

Stacey is a registered user.

My 2/100 wrote: "Wouldn't you expect that an AP calculus teacher (teaching a course that, after passing a test, grants college units?) have at least a master's in math?"

Yes, absolutely. I think you didn't understand what I wrote. I said "elementary subject matter". Then I mentioned the statistic about biology teachers who don't know their subject matter and questioned how the salary schedule fixes that problem.

Let's say that not all classes are created equal. As a student at University level, I'd want my teachers to all be experts on their subjects, PhDs, research fellows, etc. As a student in high school, I'd want my teachers to be experts in the subjects I need to get into University. If they have advanced degrees in those subjects, that's all the better. As a student in lower grade levels, how does the teacher holding an advanced degree in math going to make 1st grade any better? Or even an advanced degree in pedagogy?

Now on a general level, one could say that the salary schedule provides just this sort of incentive. I think it is too general to do that.

Also, as Karen points out, there's still no reward based upon performance.

I'll look up the reference later, but I read once about how back during the early days of the US, some of the Founding Fathers were of the mindset to establish a national university. Public education would be supported by general taxation. Washington bequeathed some assets in his will in support of such a national university (never got accomplished). One of the ideas was that the students who would be sent to such a national university would be the cream of the crop. Not everyone would be eligible. If someone graduated 8th grade, all they'd be eligible for was teaching up to 8th grade level.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 30, 2009 at 9:48 am

Stacey is a registered user.

I know I'm not being very clear because I'm trying to be brief.

Let's put this another way. If we have specific goals we'd like teachers to achieve (get a Masters in Math to teach AP calculus), why is the salary schedule not aligned with those specific goals? It doesn't seem to be. It just says "go out and get your advanced degree". There doesn't seem to be a requirement for commensurate return, as Karen put it.


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Posted by Get educated!
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 10:08 am

For as many researched random facts you present Stacey, you are missing one of the most important...what actually is being taught in today's elementary classrooms, how it is being assessed by CST testing, and how teacher training can make the difference in student ability.

Long gone are the days of simply read and recall questions. New advances in reading and writing instruction have been instituted in the district starting at the elementary level and now going to the middle schools and even some high school classes. These cognitive strategies teach kids how to infer, question, and synthesize what they read in order to comprehend at higher levels that are required on the CST.

PUSD has been on the forefront of this reading and writing instruction and it is showing positive results. Like any industry there are advancements in the way to achieve results. Teacher's extending their education is crucial for our schools to stay current. To state API scores is great, but take a moment to consider why those scores are rising. Many PUSD teachers are not only highly trained, they are presenting on a state level, and publishing in professional journals. PUSD supports this, and it is a big part in why we are seeing achievement rise.

How can this help a first grader? Instead of casting doubt about the need for elementary teachers needing higher education, why don't you go to a classroom and see the amazing skills these kids are expected to have a younger ages than ever. Go to a classroom where the reading and writing strategies are being taught. I think you would be amazed at the level of thinking our district's elementary students are exhibiting. This is something that can't be researched on a computer.


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Posted by Bite Me
a resident of Bridle Creek
on May 30, 2009 at 12:14 pm

All this negativity toward teachers is uncalled for. It's like hating the guy who serves your hamburger at McDonald's. He's really too busy to give a crap about how the company is being run. Teachers are a highly educated asset to our community. If you want em' pay em'. If not say good bye! To compare the teachers union to GM unions is just stupid. GM makes a product that people buy or they don't. Teachers teach kids. They don't sell them. In my opinion they do a damn good job here in Pleasanton and I will pay a measly 64 cents a day to keep the people and programs that are successful. This blog is filled with bitter haters. Those of you who are unemployed are likely just jealous because teachers have a more stable job. You could have found a more stable career path too. You do have options, this is America. And your personal financial problems likely have more to do with your inability to reign in your and your children's spending than it does with the economy. I don't really care if measure G passes. I have enough money to move to a better school district if needed. I'll just hire one of you to pack my boxes. AND, I won't even make you pay taxes on those wages. I bet that will make you happy!


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Posted by parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on May 30, 2009 at 1:27 pm

Teachers do not have a more stable career path, mostly because of proposition 98. Prop 98 gives a certain percentage of the income received by the State to schools; not how much they need. So when the economy was going up, schools and teachers kept getting more money. But now that the state income is down, prop 98 guarantees that school income will go down. You can't have it both ways. If you want all the extra money when times are good, you have to deal with the fact that you will get less when times are bad. The CTA which pushed for proposition 98 has to deal with this reality they created for the State.

Because of proposition 98, our district should have a better cash management plan. When proposition 98 guarantees us more money in good times, we should have a plan to put more money away during the good times to help us in the bad times. Since our local unions want all of the increase of funding from the state to go to increased salaries, our unions have put our district and teachers in the situation that they will have to give up things when the economy turns sour.

The more I have looked at how San Ramon deals with the finances, the more impressed I am with them and disappointed I am with our district. San Ramon has a longer term finance strategy where Pleasanton is just looking at the current year. San Ramon's parcel tax brings their finances to even less than what Pleasanton has but they maintain excellent API scores, and have healthy reserves. We need to demand that our district does a better job in this and learn from San Ramon.


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Posted by julie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 1:46 pm

julie is a registered user.

The problem with rating a teacher's performance lies with the fact that no one can truly quantify what makes a good teacher. What numerical data can you look at to determine a teacher's worth? Test scores? I don't think so. Tests are flawed. They don't always measure what's truly important. I'd go so far to say that what we are now expecting from children is developmentally inappropriate. And besides, children are not computers than can simply receive data and then perform. There are so many factors affecting a child's performance that have *nothing* to do with the teacher's skill: socio-economic status, family life, disabilities, illnesses, personality, cognitive ability, culture, English language skills, etc. How do you quantify a teacher's ability to inspire? I agree, higher degrees do not necessarily make the best teachers. You can have a masters in Literacy, but if you are unskilled at inspiring children to read that degree is just a piece of paper. Another problem is that people don't agree on what makes a good teacher or program. Some parents are only impressed with how many facts the teacher gets their child to learn. Others are impressed by how the teacher got their child out of their shell. Some appreciate the teacher getting the kids to perform well on standardized tests, while others appreciate a teacher who teaches their child to think creatively. I don't have the answers. I do think that teachers should be supervised more. Administrators need to be in classrooms observing what teachers do. While parent input is not always the most trustworthy (since parents tend to concentrate on their own child, may not have enough education knowledge, etc.) I do think parents should be surveyed regarding their thoughts on the teacher. Administrators may see patterns over time - good and bad. At the very least it could start some dialog between the administrator and the teacher.

I think of the job of Teacher as being as hard to critique as the job of Parent. What criteria would you want someone to use in judging your worth as a parent? Would you want your children to be in charge of reviewing you? What would your raise or lack thereof be based on - child satisfaction, their school test scores or something else? It's a tough concept, isn't it?


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 3:39 pm

<You do have options, this is America.>
Well, as a community, we really don't have the option of determining which teachers are in the classroom (even in America) because that decision is made by the union .

<The problem with rating a teacher's performance lies with the fact that no one can truly quantify what makes a good teacher.>

If you really think there is no way to quantify what makes a good teacher, then I suggest you go to the principal's office or the guidance office for the first few days of every school year when many parents are clamoring to get their kids in a particular teacher's class or many of them are fighting to get their kids out of another. I guarantee you that those parents can quantify quite specifically what makes a good/bad teacher. A stranger to town, observing this annual event, could tell which teachers are the good ones. If we can't all have the great teachers, we should certainly be able, as a community, to replace the ones no one wants...regardless of union rules.

Our family has experienced many truly wonderful teachers in Pleasanton and we have 3 teachers in our family.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 30, 2009 at 7:26 pm

Stacey is a registered user.

Julie,

I wish I had a dollar for every time someone said teacher performance can't be measured. Then I'd donate those dollars to PUSD. Have you looked at all at any of the current proposed and in-practice performance measurement systems that are out there? A while back someone posted a link to an article written by a former high school teacher that described an example system. It was based only partially upon test scores. I do not believe it impossible to measure teacher performance. You mentioned the need for more administrative supervision of teachers, so you must certainly feel that there _is_ some analysis of teacher performance.

Get Educated,

There's really two issues, I think you'll agree. As I understand, a common problem is trying to attract subject matter experts to the teaching profession. The problem you're describing is more about the dissemination of new pedagogical techniques amongst teachers. How can we create a salary schedule that attracts subject matter experts without busting the bank? Is a salary schedule really the tool for the dissemination of new advances in pedagogy?


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Posted by parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on May 30, 2009 at 8:28 pm

If you think all teachers are good, you should go to registration day at the high schools. I have observed this a couple of years at Amador and the line to make a program change to change teachers is huge (you better schedule 1 to 2 hours to wait in line with everybody else who wants to change teachers). When you get to the front of the line you will probably hear that the good teachers classes are full and the only way you can get into them is to be placed on a waiting list and hope that a student that is registered for that class has moved and does not show up on the first week of school. That is the only way you will get in.

We have some great teachers but we also have teachers that are below par. Once the teacher has been in the district for two to three years, it is quite difficult to get rid of them and principals are trying to get those teachers transferred to other schools, but they stay in the district. I am sure the good teachers would appreciate a better way than what we have today. Sometimes those teachers are in a previous grade so the next year teacher has a lot of work to get that teacher's students up to the appropriate grade level.


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Posted by julie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 9:16 pm

julie is a registered user.

Stacey I'm sorry that I don't have as much time as some people who post here to read every link and proposals. I'm posting at an entertainment site, not writing in a research journal.

Yes, there _is_ some analysis of teacher performance and it is qualitative not quantitative. I didn't say you couldn't discover that some teachers are good and some are bad, I said you can't discover it via quantitative research. Parents reporting on which teachers they like is qualitative. Our society is used to reducing everything to numbers and my point is that rating teachers is mostly subjective. The teacher who produces the class with the highest test scores is not necessarily the best teacher. The nicest teacher is not necessarily the best teacher.


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 9:48 pm

Julie- I am sure you are a teacher.

Test scores DO measure competence - otherwise, why would teachers use tests????

I'm sorry. Give me a break. Every parent at every school knows who the good teachers are and they are not really the "nice" ones either. Every book club/bunco group etc. in Pleasanton can tell you which teachers are on the ball and which ones are disasters because we talk about it all the time... we just don't have any input...we can only fight like crazy the first week of school.

After 20+ years of raising kids and getting them off to great colleges and into the business world, I am pooped. We have 3 teachers in our family - one of them a Teacher of The Year- I love great teachers and my kids have had quite a few but don't give me gobbledy-gook about not being able to assess teacher quality. In business, we are all evaluated - there is no reason we cannot develop a set of qualitative criteria to measure teacher performance.


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Posted by julie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 10:46 pm

julie is a registered user.

"there is no reason we cannot develop a set of qualitative criteria to measure teacher performance. " - that is exactly what I agree should be done. My goodness people, I'm not saying it's impossible, I'm saying it's a challenge because it's so subjective. The analysis of a bunco playing mom is subjective - even if she is in agreement with all the other bunco players. I agree that a set of qualitative criteria should be created and followed through on with direct supervision and observation.

Yes, test scores measure competence - of the child, not necessarily the teacher. Test scores are not simply higher here because of quality teaching. They are also higher here because of our demographic that includes predominately English speaking children who live in middle class or better homes and who have educated parents who likely attended college.


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Posted by Have empathy but still voting NO
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 30, 2009 at 11:14 pm

Karen: well stated.

Julie: Analysis of teacher performance as either qualitative or quantitative matters little to the parent who simply wants positive outcomes...in other words, they want to see their child progress.

For some parents "good" is measured by the test scores, for other parents, by the teacher's ability to capture their child's readiness to learn or enhance their organizational skills, etc.

Bottom line, the results of two methodologies are complimentary and the parents who are standing in line trying to get the "good" teacher usually can cite either "analysis" as to why they want a particular teacher. And the reality is, a good teacher usually has demonstrated sufficient evidence she was able to produce positive outcomes regardless of whether she is measured by qualitative or quantitative analysis.




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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 12:32 am

<test scores measure competence - of the child, not necessarily the teacher.>

I can't go along with this. Let me give you an example: My son took a few AP classes in high school and scored 4s on all his AP exams including two social studies courses (fabulous teachers and everyone knows who they are) and, while he got As in every year of French classes, after the AP French class he scored a 2... a 2!!! on the AP exam. After 4 years of As in French and 4s on all his other AP tests??? We knew the gig was up anyway when we went to France...and he did not test out of French in college either and had to take 2 semesters of it, so it was not just a bad testing day. Besides, he wasn't the only one - the statistics are available at the high school, recording the lackluster French testing results. So...convince all of us parents that these French teachers have more on the ball than the social studies teachers. That would be an uphill battle. These AP tests are nationwide and the students of our social studies teachers score high year after year. Those teachers are terrific - the kids love them... they learn so much and they consistently test very well in a pool of their peers nationwide. But all those teachers are on the same pay scale as the Fernch teachers.

Testing results do reveal teacher performance.

After all these years, I have concluded we must evaluate and reward teaching performance. Just like any other business. This is the business of educating for our nation's future. It needs to happen nationwide. Union protections may work for teachers but they are not working for the youth of America.


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Posted by Have empathy but still voting NO,
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 1:50 pm

Karen: I have no clue who you are but your experience seems so close to the one we have had.

Interesting re: French class. My daughter graduated in '99 (4th in her class) and the exact same thing happen. Prep for the AP was 2 hrs long and the teacher was ~ 30min late for that prep. I was so angry (this was before I even found out my daughter got a 2 on her exam) that I called the counselor and voiced a complaint. She was one of the best counselors back then, but said quite honestly she had a lot complaints about this particular teacher and there was not a single thing she could do.

Meanwhile, she passed her AP history, Chem, English and Bio w/ 4-5 scores.

You make a an excellent point. I was too dumb back then to connect the dots. I only knew the teacher was irresponsible and ineffective.




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Posted by hello people`
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 2:55 pm

It seems that there is an assumption that eveyone in the community has taken a pay cut or suffered job loss so teachers should too. For instance, did you know, that nurses at our local hospitals make upwards of $100K? They aren't taking a cut and while it might be difficult to get a nursing job now, they aren't laying off. How many other industries haven't cut salaries? I think it is more than you can imagaine. It is always easier to ask someone else to take the hit rather than yourself.

If the parcel tax fails, let's get to the program cuts.


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 5:58 pm

I know quite a few people in Pleasanton who have lost jobs already or who are really worried...companies aren't selling much these days...and no one that I know of has tenure with their job. A friend at John Muir has told me about nurses hours being cut back...nurses don't have tenure as far as I know. And most of us have lost at least 30% of our 401K retirement. Not much job security out there and very few pension plans. The schools and unions need to tap into reality and put the brakes on raises in times like these.


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Posted by high school teacher
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 6:37 pm

I know that kids often try to get into certain teachers classes because they are easier. That doesn't mean they are the best. Every single time I give an assignment that challenges my kids, they balk about it and make comments about how "so and so" isn't making them do that! I take this as the "nature of the beast" with teenagers, but I also think it's a little scary to use teacher popularity as a measurement of teacher worth.

I had an Algebra teacher in high school that I HATED. So did everyone else. If Ratemyteachers had existed back then, she would've been lambasted!. She was HARD and gave a lot of bad grades. MY SATs in math were better for having had her, though. How many of you can look back and remember a teacher like that? Someone you didn't value at the time but came to appreciate years later? Just food for thought...


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Posted by another nurse
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 8:06 pm

Please know my comments below are in NO WAY COMPLAINING re: nursing layoffs, what I "get" @ retirement etc. Also it does NOT suggest nurses have it worse off than anyone else in this economy. Its simply an attempt to inform those posters who want to defend why teacher's raises do not need to be put on hold, or have 30 kids in a classroom by citing nurses as a comparison. I will probably be unsuccessful, however. If those posters don't get it by now re: the state of this economy, my few words will certainly not bring any light to their non reality world.


1) Nurses do not have tenure. I have no problem w/that.

2)Nurses ARE let go for poor performance. I have seen in my 29 yr career many nurses let go for various reasons. Some legitimate, others not. It's quite easy to get "rid" of a nurse. One example: The nurse leaves a paper trail w/ every patient touched. Anyone can find fault w/ what you wrote or did not write and cite "error".

4)Nurses are educated to assume full responsibility for patient outcomes and are measured by those outcomes? MD writes wrong order and the nurse implements without questioning the MD or getting a second opinion, Well that nurse should of known better. I have absolutely NO problem w/ this.

3) The liabilities (some reasonable/others not) that threaten the nurse's license are enormous. The nurse works in a highly emotional setting where often emotions drive lawsuits opposed to mal-pratice. Many nurses carry mal-practice insurance (although not all), an additional cost just to show up @ work for some. No problem, that's what they signed up for.

3) Health care @ retirement reflects most of those in the private sector. You must pay for your health care coverage until you can bridge to Medicare. There are no special "deals" because you were a nurse. No eye benefits. No dental benefits when you probably need it the most. Nor do I think there should be.

4) Because of layoffs in the private sector (notice I did not say gov sector), people are loosing their health plans Fewer insured people means less dollars to deliver care and nurses indeed are being sent home when they report to work. When people hear there is a "bed shortage" what that means really is there is a shortage of nurses for that day to cover the beds. The actual physical beds are there...but the hospital cannot accept patients, because the nurses were sent home that cares for the patients in the beds. Thus the industry will label that a "bed shortage". I don't like the lingo used, but this is the reality we live in right now.

4). Nurse Practitioners are let go to preserve MD jobs. And even MDs in this economy are being asked to work 4 hrs less/wk. I don't like that at all, but again it's the reality for the moment.

5) I personally don't know any nurse who makes close to 100k. IF that is true, then that person is working 40hrs/wk,12mos out of the year, shift work and holidays.

Thanks for allowing me to share a few thoughts. Sorry it ws so long.


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Posted by teacher
a resident of Birdland
on May 31, 2009 at 9:01 pm

@ another nurse

I read your post and I found myself empathizing with you for being in a position where you need to validate the job you do and the money you make. Be thankful your income doesn't come from tax revenue or they'd be throwing flames from the second you pressed "enter".


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Posted by Good Observations
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 31, 2009 at 9:05 pm

Great observations by "high school teacher" and "another nurse".

Thanks...



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Posted by Citizen
a resident of Happy Valley
on May 31, 2009 at 9:18 pm

Citizen is a registered user.

I will be voting no on G. G is a measure put forth by the teachers union to preserve pay increases in a recession. It is not about preserving education or safety in our schools. It is about teacher pay. A short term 4% pay cut, or a deferral of their planned increase would have solved this issue. Most of us can afford the extra $250/year. It isn't an issue of money. I'd gladly pay more the day the union allows us to let go of poor teachers, or sets up a pay for performance structure so we can pay great teachers more money, or gets rid of seniority as the only means to downsize when times are tough. GM files for bankruptcy tomorrow. Its the same problem - too much pension, to much pay, too LITTLE PERFORMANCE. Vote NO ON G!


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Posted by resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 1, 2009 at 6:29 am

The teachers didn't put forth Measure G. The school board did.

I also don't know how you can say this is about teacher raises. If you're referring to S & C, that's $2 million of an $18.6 million dollar problem. Even if teachers had given up their contracts, PUSD would still be in a financial crisis. Don't believe the propaganda!

Vote YES! Our schools need you!!!!


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jun 1, 2009 at 7:03 am

resident: Step and column compounds each year (math is on other threads) so that it is $15 million of the $18 million. The district has confirmed this.


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Posted by another nurse
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 1, 2009 at 7:53 am

To teacher of Birland who says "empathizing with you for being in a position where you need to validate the job you do"

Emapthy is always a good thing, but unfortunately misplaced in your response. No where in the post was there reference to validating my job. Please go back and re-read. Any need for validation in regard to personal or job identity is met by internal sources, not external. You completely missed the intent and the content of my post.

I repeat: "Its simply an attempt to inform those posters who want to defend why teacher's raises do not need to be put on hold, or have 30 kids in a classroom by citing nurses as a comparison."

and then....

" I will probably be unsuccessful, however. If those posters don't get it by now re: the state of this economy, my few words will certainly not bring any light to their non reality world."


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