Rhody Reporter: Teachers Gotta Teach

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Mark Zaccaria examines the current conundrum in our public schools: Teachers don’t want to Teach, but they don’t want anyone else to, either. Too bad the RI Senate is aiding and abetting that stance.



  • Clyde the glyde

    What a load of bull****. Teachers have been teaching and adapting since the first days of covid. What teachers don’t want is to teach in buildings with out proper distancing, ventilation and most would like to be vaccinated. Did Mrs Katz go back to work with full classes and a full school?

    • Justin Katz

      Why, yes, oh brave anonymous commenter who brings my family into things, she did, and with children who aren’t able to socially distance. That’s the job. Unfortunately, labor unions — which are wholly inappropriate in a profession like education — have long been a special interest group manipulating politics to redefine such jobs for their own benefit and to the detriment of children.

      • Clyde the glyde

        It’s public knowledge that Mrs Katz is a “government school “ employee. Weren’t you the one who published the towns and school employees salaries. Your wife clearly benefits from the unions and by proxy so do you.

        • Justin Katz

          Funny how you dodge the point to ease your conscience. The issue isn’t acknowledging that she works for a government school; it’s that you thought it relevant in response to somebody else’s post while hiding behind a false name.

          Yes, I published town and school employee salaries, which you know because I put my name on the things that I do.

          As for the union benefit, I’d dispute your claim. She is not a member of the union, and I’d argue that the compensation to her (and to many teachers) would be substantially higher were it not for rigid union schemes… let alone the improved work and community environment in which their jobs are conducted.

  • Justin Katz

    1. No, that is simply an assertion. I think all teachers would be doing better were it not for teachers unions.
    2. It is telling of your worldview that you believe people in authority (as I am over these comment sections) ought to simply forbid activity of which they don’t approve. False names aren’t the problem; it’s the use of them to attack other individuals while under cover to which I object.
    3. By force of law, government forces everybody to fund government schools (lavishly, I might add). That leaves relatively less money for non-government schools. But note that I’m not saying all teachers would be better off without the unions. Unions’ job is to cater to workers whose talents don’t justify what they’re paid.

    • Clyde the Glyde

      I guess it easy to say something is just an assertion but the evidence is clear. Public school teachers have better pay and almost always have better benefits than private schools. Your hatred for unions is clearly shown in your statement that ” a Unions’ job is to cater to workers whose talents or work ethic don’t justify what they’re paid.” That means that you think that every school employee in the town of Tiverton and every other unionized work place is full of lazy and untalented people. My world view about your insistence that people who don’t agree with you must post with real names while the few other people who comment in your favor is that you are a weak minded fraud who can’t see his own hypocrisy. You allow attacks of all kinds on all types of people so long as they agree with you. I may have missed it but when your few commenters attack the governors or progressives you fail to call them out and ask for a real name. When you do that, your outrage might actually have some impact but until then it just shows you are a fraud.

      • Justin Katz

        It would help the conversation move along if you would try not to translate every statement into an extreme. I consider teachers to be individuals, not a borg of interchangeable cogs, as you apparently do.

        The fact that unions cater to workers whose talents or work ethic don’t justify what they’re paid does not mean that “every school employee… is full of lazy and untalented people.” It only means that those who are motivated and talented would do better in the absence of the unions.

        By inflating the price of teachers regardless of merit, unions draw people into the field who otherwise wouldn’t consider it. This creates a glut in the job market, it wraps public employment in a layer of politics, and strict longevity rules further advantage those who’ve simply been around a long time rather than those who might do the best job. This dynamic removes motivation from established teachers and makes it more difficult for younger teachers to break into the field.

        Thus there’s even more of a glut where the free market does apply, pushing down pay in private schools. Many talented teachers therefore spend years — or decades — making less than they would if it weren’t for unions. When they do manage to get into the high-paying public sector, they may not get credit for all of their years in the rigid union step system, so they make less than they should based on experience. Moreover, that same rigid step system ensures that incredible teachers are paid the same as terrible teachers, which implicitly means that the best teachers are underpaid because they’re subsidizing the worst teachers.

        I contend that all of this means that good teachers would be better off at any given time and, especially, over the course of their careers, without unions.

        As to anonymity, you overstate my emotions by saying I’m “outraged.” I think your cowardice does not speak well of you, and I said so. I don’t really care all that much. And if you or somebody is offended by the statements of other commenters, then it’s up to you to call them out. You called me into this conversation; I didn’t swoop in to decry your anonymity, so why should I do so for others?