Teachers in California, with their union thugs and the support and participation of ACORN are brainwashing elementary, middle school and high school students with political rhetoric -- among reports of bribes, threats and intimidation -- in an outrageous attempt to draw public support. The press, by the way, is right there to be the mouthpiece for the socialists.
This story is so completely over-the-top I will encourage you to eat this entire enchilada with me as I work through the morass in two parts. In the first part, I am going to review the status quo of the school system here in California, teachers salary, benefits, and how the product of the system (students) fare against the rest of the nation. Then in Part II, we are going to examine events or this week, culminating in Pink Friday, and the explicit and implicit goals of the teachers and their union thugs, with those of the press. The conclusion that I draw, and I hope you will as well, is that we do not need more government. We need less. While this is happening here in California today, this will be your state someday soon, so you might want to bookmark this page.
The California school system ranks 34th in the nation in SAT scores. Those are the scores of the kids that actually take the SAT. The California high school graduation rate is a horrific 80.6%. In the Los Angeles Unified School District, the high school graduation rate is 67%. The product that California schools produce: 20% dropouts, the rest are not competitive.
California teachers have the highest salaries in the nation an average of $64,424, before benefits. The average teacher by himself earns 7.5% more per year than most entire households in California (median HH income $59,948). By the way, teachers only work ten months out of the year.
I said salary ‘before benefits,’ because for California teachers, the District pays the entire cost of their medical, dental, vision and life insurance premiums. Prescription name brand drugs? Only $10 per 34 day supply. These are gold-plated benefits, and it doesn’t stop there. Retired teachers have fully paid medical for life. And the California State Teachers Retirement System (STRS) is also a gold-plated defined benefit retirement plan. I don’t know about you, but the last time I had a fully-paid employer plan of any kind, Eisenhower was a mess cook.
But there is more: even part time cafeteria workers are gifted with fully-paid medical etc. benefit plans. Have you seen a school lunch menu lately? We are not talking about needing Paul Prudhomme to whip up something fabulous every day. It is packaged, processed food. I am serious as a heart attack. We could probably hire McDonalds to serve food for our children at a lower cost and higher nutritious product.
But wait, there is more. Do you think the Feds have forgotten about teachers? No! There is a federal program for student loan forgiveness. (Note the snappy web page ending "teachercancel.jsp?tab=repaying".)
So here is the bottom line: California teachers bounce out of school ten months out of the year with one of the best gold-plated benefit plans in the nation, with a salary higher than most households in the state. The feds support them with student loan forgiveness and who knows what else. And the product? A near 20% dropout rate and SAT scores near the bottom.
I’d say that you and I have a lot to complain about the school system, and specifically, California teachers.
I am outraged, stupefied, shocked and angry. But I am not speechless. More in Part II tomorrow.