Teachers v. billionaires

David Sirota says:

The pervasive media mythology tells us that the fight over the schoolhouse is supposedly a battle between greedy self-interested teachers who don’t care about children and benevolent billionaire “reformers” whose political activism is solely focused on the welfare of kids. Epitomizing the media narrative, the Wall Street Journal casts the latter in sanitized terms, reimagining the billionaires as philanthropic altruists “pushing for big changes they say will improve public schools.”

The first reason to scoff at this mythology should be obvious: It simply strains credulity to insist that pedagogues who get paid middling wages but nonetheless devote their lives to educating kids care less about those kids than do the Wall Street hedge funders and billionaire CEOs who finance the so-called reform movement. Indeed, to state that pervasive assumption out loud is to reveal how utterly idiotic it really is, and yet it is baked into almost all of today’s coverage of education politics.

via http://www.salon.com/2013/03/11/getting_rich_off_of_schoolchildren

2 Responses to “Teachers v. billionaires”

  1. Overall, the media and the general public with their closed-minded thinking give teachers a bad name. In their eyes teachers are glorified babysitters, whose jobs are low-level and less superior to those of the billionaires. What they do not realize is that without the underpaid, overworked, exhausted, dedicated teachers, they would have no reform schools to fund. Teachers are the ones in the trenches day in and day out fighting for the future’s of the children they teach. Danielson (2006) succinctly hit the nail on the head when he said “that fact, combined with the bureaucratic nature of schools and the pattern of mostly male administrators supervising mostly female teachers, has reinforced the public perception of teaching as relatively low-skilled work with generous vacations” (p. 13). It is this narrow-minded thinking that gets me heated. Being a teacher does not hinge on your sex, age, payroll, or any other factor other than the dedication one shows to educating our youth. If it were not for these underpaid individuals, where would anyone be on the road to success? Doctors, lawyers…they were all taught to be what they are today by teachers; yet they get paid triple what a teacher does. Why is it, then, that billionaires get so bent out of shape when teachers request more money for their time, effort, blood, sweat, and tears? Shame on them!

    Danielson, C. (2006). Teacher leadership that strengthens professional practice. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

  2. Scott,

    To follow up on your post, and my subsequent response, my question would be how do we find a way to change the perspective of the media? Do you think there is a way, or will ever be a way, for educators to get the respect they deserve? I think the students are the ones who are most affected by philanthropists who say they care but merely throw a little money their way from time to time. Maybe if we shed some light on the topic in a more global view society will see the situation for what it really is. Until then small minded people will continue to exist and believe what they want to believe.

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