I’m back! I know I’ve been away for a little while, just needed some time to recharge, go on vacation and take a break from writing. And boy oh boy, did I ever find a juicy bit of web linking for you. CBC uploaded this article today on the topic of salary increases for teachers in Alberta.

The content of the article isn’t really what I want to cover in this post, but rather the comments that followed the article. Yes, the topic of salaries is a sticky one with a lot of people, teachers and other professionals alike. But it’s what people perceive our professional lives to be that interests me. If you’ve never read the comments that follow a CBC article, I highly recommend you do, they can be hiding treasures that will make your day. (Though I find myself sometimes wondering if allowing comments is a good thing, given how many quick-to-judge, uneducated comments there are…)

As I scrolled through the comments attached to this particular article, I began to notice a trend in the discussion. It seems that the large majority of the readers have this idea that teachers don’t deserve a salary raise because of how much vacation time we are allotted. As to whether teachers actually deserve a raise or not is not something I want to get into here, but it is certainly something that many non-teachers believe is undeserved.

To sum up the discussion, commenters consistently raged against the summer vacation, our two months of time outside of school. They also ranted against the major holiday vacations that we are allowed. And finally, they complained about the seeming endless stream of professional days. This last point really makes me laugh because it just goes to show how ignorant the public is on the subject of what a PD day entails.

On the flip side of the discussion are educators or people who know educators. Much of what they had to say revolved around defending the hours of a work day, planning, marking, etc. You know why that makes me laugh so hard? Because if we could do what people think we do, then we would be superbly amazing fantastic multitaskers. It never seems to occur to the general layman that a teacher spends all day TEACHING. If we could plan and prep while we were teaching, well hell, that’d be GREAT! Alas, ’tis not so.

I’d like to leave you with a few comments that really crack me up.

  • “We tend to pay the people who hold our children ransom.” – kissss
  • “Children will be Alberta’s greatest resource…after they figure out how to extract oil from them. ;)” – Sleeper77
  • “Full time pay for a part time job! 6.5 hrs per day, and only 9 months work per year?” – redneckalbertan
  • “The class sizes of today are nothing compared to the 70’s yet teachers still whine about them.” – Pablothewino