JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: ONTARIO’S EFFORT TO CLAMP DOWN ON TEACHER LABOR COST – COMPARISON WITH OTHERS HAVING SIMILAR EDUCATION – ONTARIO’S SYSTEM NOT COMPETITIVE   Leave a comment

 

 

 

JOHN CHUCKMAN

POSTED RESPONSES TO A COLUMN IN TORONTO’S GLOBE AND MAIL

It is a terrible waste of precious resources to give teachers the total package they now receive.

Their wages, considering many of them have little more than a general BA and 9 months at an academically worthless teachers’ college, are extremely high.

The next best job most of them would qualify for is as a salesperson or clerk, and that is not a sarcasm.

And we only ask them to work for less than 9 months a year, and those are comprised of short days.

We give them the most ridiculously generous days-off benefits on the planet. Paid substitutes every time they are off plus, of course, their own salaries – so each day off costs taxpayers roughly double.

They are also permitted an inordinate number of days off – 24 per short year – and many treat this allowance as almost an additional vacation time they would be foolish to miss.

“Banking” of sick days, something almost unheard of in private business, is pure abuse.

Then they get all those “professional development’ days off. They are supposed to be doing worthwhile things on those days, but in reality they amount to still more vacation.

They, unlike most comparably paid people in industry, are never expected to work one minute of overtime, at least not without being paid more.

They are responsible to virtually no one for their skill and performance levels. After being hired, they are never, never checked out by anyone. There is no such thing as a meaningful assessment of performance.

And what do we get in return? An undistinguished level of achievement for our young people which is absolutely not competitive in the world.

And our children spend roughly half a year in school each year.

The pay for performance is actually rather disgraceful.
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“That’s why teachers vote liberal.”

It has little to do with Liberals, although McGuinty has been especially grovelling towards teachers.

Conservatives have no record – none at all – of doing anything serious about the gross excesses of teachers.

Every politician is afraid of a teachers’ strike.

We really need someone ready to take one to pare the excesses down.

Once we have one, it won’t last long, and we can get back to a real world set of conditions applying to teacher employment.

Teachers would fold in short order when they found they would not be able to manage this year’s holiday in France or the payments on the BMW.

We desperately need not only budget savings but a new sense of purpose and urgency to become competitive in our public schools.

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