Anyone out there honestly believe that these teachers aren't getting paid enough?
Do you have an idea how much work goes into being a teacher? Are you familiar with the cost of living in states like Chicago versus other areas? Salaries are determined by so many factors, as Trieste kindly pointed out, and the scale goes from rock bottom starting all the way up to those public school teachers who hold doctorates and advanced degrees. For instance, once I get my accreditation handled, I can expect to make 36,000 a year starting with benefits. You take out the pay deductions and the percentage we have to pay into retirement and insurance and I maybe have a take home of under 30,000 dollars. That's not a lot these days, especially living in an expensive area like Florida.
Shall we talk just how much it costs to get the degrees and training teachers are required to have in my state? In case you were wondering, we do have to pay out of pocket for our licenses, renewals, advanced in-services, and the like. It is not just handed to us.
Being a teacher is not some easy 9-5 job that ends when we get home. Our county took away planning periods this year. I watch my wife lug home work every weekend and have to spend her time off working. Handling 25 kids in one room while trying to teach them is not an easy accomplishment either. I'd love to see how those who complain about "teachers make too much" would handle it.