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Hundreds gather to support education
Original post made
on Apr 7, 2008
About 350 people rallied in front of Amador Theater Friday afternoon to show support for increased state funding for education. In addition to students, parents and district employees, Sen. Ellen Corbett and Assembly members Mary Hayashi and Alberto Torrico joined in the event organized by the Pleasanton PTA Council.
Read the full story here Web Link
posted Sunday, April 6, 2008, 11:07 PM
Posted by Pleasanton Teacher
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Apr 10, 2008 at 6:24 pm
I'm probably walking into the firing range here, but I have to put in my two cents. I was at that rally and I have to say I was quite surprised by the amount of parent support there. I appreciate their time for showing up to support, not the teachers, but their children. I am one of those "horrible" tenured teachers, however, I had to work very very hard to get to the place that I'm in facing years of changing schools, losing and regaining my job, and working long, hard hours to prove myself. Though I'm tenured, I still work every bit as hard at my job.
I read that people suggest we should have pay cuts. When I was a single teacher in Pleasanton, I barely made enough to scrape by and, yet, am quite conservative with my money. I think the general public with be shocked if they learned how much most teachers spend out of pocket on basic supplies such as paper, pencils, and books. To keep up with the Pleasanton expectations, we are also expected to purchase supplementary supplies, whether the funds are given to us or not. We pay for our educations, trainings, and many in-services out of pocket and are rarely, if ever, reimbursed for hours of work outside our "work day" that we spend fulfilling our job expectations. Few teachers do this job for the money. We are lucky to have jobs that most of us enjoy and the kids mean the world to us. Our jobs are taxing only because of political tangles like this budget crisis and No Child Left Behind.
I am teacher, "counselor", "police officer", "nurse", "parent", and "judge" on a daily basis and am often at school from 7 in the morning until long after the sun has gone down. While there are a handful of teachers in this district that might pollute the opinion of the rest of us, there are a far greater number that are giving their blood, sweat, and tears (not to mention their sanity) to their kids every day.At my school there are 7 teachers who received pink slips this year. They did not receive pink slips for lack of effort or skill. They received them because the budget does not allow them to be rehired. Sadly, those jobs will likely still be around, but these wonderful, talented teachers will have been scooped up by a luckier school district and we will be left with what is left. Pleasanton prides itself on its education program, but if new teachers are being rotated through schools year after year, that is a status symbol Pleasanton residents will have to envision losing.
I agree that the budget needs to be cut and spending needs to be reined in, but at what cost. Plans can be put into place to eliminate wasteful spending. Perhaps law makers should also consider a pay cut to coincide with their all expense paid trips, dinners, and accomodations. The last trip I went on was a field trip and I even had to pay for myself to go. My husband works for the government in transportation. His department isn't taking any cuts. My father works for law enforcement. His department isn't taking any cuts. I have dear family friends that work as district attorneys and they are not getting pay cuts or massive firings. Yet, in my relatively short time as a teacher, this is the second massive budget cut to education I've experienced.Perhaps it comes down to the fact that the people who are most deeply involved cannot vote, don't have a loud enough voice, and aren't thought to understand the situation that we are in.
In the words of a friend's son, "Education is getting worser and worser." I think that about sums it up.