(Michael Chamberlain/Nevada Business Coalition) – Here you probably thought the purpose of the education system was to teach children. Silly you.
You should know that the education establishment and other supporters of the status quo have some very different ideas.
One of GOP Governor Brian Sandoval’s education reform proposals, AB555, would have, among other things, removed the automatic pay raises teachers receive for obtaining advanced degrees. Former NPRI education analyst Patrick Gibbons recently testified at a committee hearing on this bill.
This additional pay, according to Gibbons, costs the state around $170 million every two years. After Gibbons presented evidence that such degrees do not improve the ability of teachers to better educate their students, Speaker John Oceguera (D-Las Vegas) wrote on Twitter,
Actually , I think what he is saying is that we don’t want to our teachers to continue learning..what about being role models!
Forgive us, but we thought the purpose of education was to teach students. And that’s where taxpayers’ dollars should be focused. Obtaining degrees that do not make them better teachers may be a laudable pursuit for the teachers themselves but rewarding them with higher pay for doing so is not an effective use of taxpayer money.
It is rare that workers in the private sector get automatic pay increases for obtaining advanced degrees. Normally, they benefit from this education by becoming more valuable to their employers – better at their jobs and/or with additional skills that make them more likely to advance.
Wouldn’t a teacher be a better role model if he continued learning on his own dime rather than forcing other people to pay him extra for it, especially if it doesn’t make him better at teaching children? Apparently, not according to Speaker Oceguera.
The education system should not be devoting taxpayer money to reward adults for things that do not benefit the children. We need to reform the system so that it focuses on the children, not the adults. Convincing those within the education establishment of this is one of the most difficult tasks.
(Michael Chamberlain is Executive Director of Nevada Business Coalition.)