Texas teachers get a raise and here are just a few reasons why
It’s back-to-school time and we are pleased to see the whirlwind of activities on public and private school campuses in Fredericksburg, Harper, Stonewall and Doss.
We begin this editorial by noting that Fredericksburg Independent School District board of trustees adjusted its salary schedule, the first version of which contained a hiccup for teachers in the 18-year range. Without getting too deep in the weeds about formulas for raises, there was a discrepancy for some teachers that wasn’t fixed by an increase in the state’s portion of school funding addressed in the last legislative session.
One teacher who serves as a liaison to the Texas State Teachers Association voiced his concerns to us and we had a story about it last month. That same teacher came in later and excitedly told us he had met with Superintendent Dr. Jeffrey Brasher and the concern had been addressed.
We appreciate the district’s attention to this and the trustees’ desire to do right by its hard-working instructors. While the state’s increase won’t be anywhere near the “$5,000 raise” that the state’s top leaders crowed about during the session, it is nonetheless a needed bump for teachers.
Why do teachers deserve a raise and much more? Here are a few of about a million traits defining a teacher.
A teacher is:
• A person who knows they aren’t teaching a subject, they are teaching a student.
• Someone who often takes their “free” time to talk with a parent of a child who needs a pat on the back after a poor performance, or praise after a good one.
• That person whose vehicle is parked by a school in the summer, weeks before students show up, preparing for classes.
• Someone who stays awake until 1 a.m. not only grading papers, but also writing comments on them in hopes something will be written to inspire or help the student do better next time.
• A person who can take criticism, sometimes undeserved, and unfair remarks, without becoming confrontational because they know that wouldn’t do the student any good.
• Someone who can hear a parent say “my child wouldn’t do that!” without bursting into laughter.
• That person who takes a handful of perfect strangers in the summer, molds them into a cohesive classroom, grows to care for them deeply, then abruptly gives them up forever in the spring.
• For some children, unfortunately, the rock in their lives, the one who is constant and always there when they need an “always there.”
• The one who makes your kid light up and call a name when he or she sees them in the dog food aisle at the grocery store.
• That person whose face suddenly appears in your memory 30 years after you’ve left school when you realize you’ve overcome some obstacle in your life because that teacher inspired you when you were sitting in a classroom in a building that may not even be there anymore.
Teachers deserve their pay increase. Let’s hope it’s sustainable in future years.
Teachers also deserve our thanks. But let’s face it — our thanks doesn’t help pay the rent or make a car payment.
Part of this editorial was adapted from one first
published in The Rockdale Reporter.