In addition to an increase in pay, teachers say classroom resources are equally important to student achievement.
MetroNews staff photo
In addition to an increase in pay, teachers say classroom resources are equally important to student achievement.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Members of the West Virginia American Federation of Teachers will be looking for a pay raise when the legislative session starts in January. The request is almost considered an automatic part of the organization’s priority list annually.

“We’re always looking for an increase in teacher pay,” said President Christine Campbell. “We stay at the bottom nationwide, we’ve really got to look at investing in quality educators in the state of West Virginia if we want to see an increase in student achievement.”

As usual, there are indications of a very tight budget on the horizon and pay raises for anybody will be hard to find. Campbell said what her organization is looking for is more than a one time across the board increase.  They’d rather see something built in gradually so the state could absorb the cost.

“We would like to work with the legislators to look for something a little more long term,” she said on MetroNews Talkline. “A package over time, so it’s not a burden to the state all at once.”

However, the legislative agenda for the teachers union goes beyond just increased pay. Campbell said pay is only a part of what is needed to improve student achievement. The second, and more challenging part is to improve classroom resources and remove obstacles for teachers in the classroom.

“Our members want resources in the classroom,” Campbell said. “They want to have smaller class sizes to address the needs of all students. We want to be able to incorporate professional development and collaboration into the day to meet the needs of all students.”

They’ll be communicating those needs to lawmakers and the Tomblin Administration as the session opens in January.

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Comments

  • Myron

    From a previous metronews article....


    After hearing from a lawyer and teachers, the board voted unanimously to ban blue jeans, faded jeans, and shorts.

    The teachers were not pleased with the decision.

    "I'm very disappointed. I think I give 200 percent of myself for this county, and I don't feel like they have given me any respect back. They said they're doing this to protect us from the few people that didn't follow the dress code. As far as I'm concerned, and from my understanding, blue jeans was never involved in that. So I don't understand why they are taking away the blue jeans," said Carmen Shafer, a Lewis County teacher.

    Although the teachers are disappointed, BOE President Paul Derico said the board wanted to make both the teachers and public happy.

    "We've had a lot of comments, or at least I have personally, and that comment is, 'I'm glad you board members are finally doing something about the way the teachers dress.' I think we are trying to be considerate of the teachers and the public at the same time," Derico said.

    Jeff Blaydes, the lawyer representing the American Federation of Teachers, said that it will most likely file a lawsuit against the Board of Education and that the dress code is against the constitutional right of the teachers.

    • Aaron

      Someone should tell Mr. Blaydes to do a quick search on the constitutionality of dress code. Were he to do a quick search, he would find 4 cases in which federal courts have found teachers have no constitutional right to dress and have held that those discharged for violation of dress code policies have no recourse against the governing body that implemented the dress code.

      • stophating

        I see 0 cases from the 4th judicial circuit. If a case hasn't been decided by the 4th circuit or the US Supreme Court--then it has no bearing in WV.... no charge for the free lesson in civics

        • Aaron

          That's simply not true. There have been cases decided in 3 federal appellate courts meaning precedent has been set. You really should educate yourself.

          • O M G

            LOL, Aaron. This guy is a teacher and the more he posts, the more he proves why WV student test scores are so low.

            I feel sorry for students who go through his classes. Wow.

          • stophating

            1---you are incorrect, decisions only affect the district they originate from.

            2---it's great how everyone assumed you are correct with no credentials..... This reinforces the fact that WV has no value for teachers

            3--- if your profession was constantly insulted by someone, would you fight back

            4--- I observed your responses came during typical working hours for professionals..... I couldn't respond yesterday as I worked 2 eight hour jobs..... Apparently your life is easier than mine.....


            I could sign off with a negative comment, but won't....Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            You don't know what your talking about hater.

          • stophating

            @Aaron can't prove me wrong, so you claim I'm lying.... I think you know what is coming......


            Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            The question in all courts regarding previous court decisions comes down to two questions. Is it binding or persuasive?

            Unfortunately for you, all federal court decisions are binding on ALL other federal courts thus when one challenges the Constitutionality of an issue as is the case on teacher clothing, all federal court decisions are binding.

            Were the court a state court, then it isn't automatically binding to federal courts but any decision rendered is persuasive meaning the court should consider the decision but they do not necessarily have to come to the same conclusion as state laws vary.

            There are gray areas from court to court. If one wants to do the research to find out the process for legal research, Georgetown Law has a very nice template. Google "Georgetown Law School Which court is binding, mandatory versus persuasive?"

            If you do, you will see that again, unfortunate for your comments, federal court decisions are mandatory decisions involving all other federal courts.

            Anything else?

          • stophating

            Took you a very long time to come up with that.... I have a few attorneys in my family and will apologize if I am wrong after speaking with them. I will say this is contradicted by five text books that I consulted, including one on the current list of approved texts for civics.

          • Aaron

            I figured someone with a PhD would know that or at least be able to use google.

          • stophating

            Believe it or not, just because its posted on the Internet does not make it true..... Have you seen the French model commercial?

          • Aaron

            Feel free to prove me wrong Dr. Hater.

  • Myron

    In Lewis County, teachers, with Ms. Campbell's support have correctly
    Taken the position that the BOE banning jeans and implementing a dress code is a violation of teacher rights.

  • Independent View

    Every year it's the same old triate refrain from the teachers and their unions--"give us raises and WV's education system will improve and Johnny will be able to read." Sorry, but that dog won't hunt! We have LITERALLY been throwing money at education in the form of new facilities, smaller classrooms, teacher's assistants and yes, pay raises and benefits for decades now in WV. What has been the result? Have test scores gone up? No. Are students better able to perform college level work? No, but it has caused a new growth area in education, tutors teaching bonehead math, science, english and social studies to incoming freshman that are unable to demonstrate even high scool level learning skills.
    If a majority of teachers were employed in the private sector, they would be fired at their first performance review, however, thanks to their two unions not only are they not fired, but given pay raises and enhanced benefits. Now that's a good gig if you can get it! And, for Ms. Campbell to take exception to teachers being asked to dress like professionals as they want to be referred to, is also insulting. Mo-mos, sweat pants, blue jeans and exercise outfits ARE NOT how professionals dress at work. A majority of teachers dress like they are going out to do yard work or change oil in their car rather than educate young minds; as a matter of fact, many look like Street Urchins. And, why must practically all new school buildings in WV have huge teacher parking areas at the front of the school building? Why not park in the back lot and walk off 40-50 lbs of that fat. What kind of an example does this set for students when those same teachers are suppossed to be promoting daily exercise? In the larger sense, what ever became of the mantra that teachers are to set a good example to students? That mantra was traded for "we want more money!"

    • stophating

      Ever wonder why teachers dress poorly? Maybe they can't afford what you consider proper professional attire?

      • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

        Whatever.....that is BS.

        • stophating

          I don't teach math.... But let's do a basic budget and see where the money for clothing can be found...
          31675 beginning salary
          -1900 retirement
          -4000 state and federal taxes
          -3600 student loan payments
          -4800 rent
          -2000 car, health, insurances
          -5200 food
          -3650 gas
          -2400 miscellaneous expense
          -3600 utilities

          The beginning teacher is left with a -500.... And many of my estimates are quite low for many areas of the state....

          • WhgFeeling

            Wow I can only imagine the outcome would be for a correctional officer, CPS worker, state road worker, DEP employee.......AND they don't have the extra 2 months in the summer to subisdize their income. NOR do they get a built in raise yearly.

          • Aaron

            A couple of things. First, your salary doesn't list the county supplemental salary, which all but 4 in WV offer.

            Second, the student loan payment is high as Obamacare places a cap on how much individuals have to pay back at 10% so your monthly number should be $260.

            I know it's not much but ever little bit helps. If the individual works with their provider, they can get the payment lowered, if not deferred.

            What your omitting in your breakdown is that every profession has a starting salary, many low forcing those in entry level positions to scrimp and save. It's a part of life.

            As for the retirement, teachers still have a defined retirement plan so without doing some research, I'd say that number is a little high as well.

            All in all though, I'd say for a 22-23 year old to come out of college and make $20.00 an hour isn't too shabby. I know most professions, including nurses, don't make that as a starting wage.

            What was your complaint again?

          • Honey Badger

            Man, if you spend that much for gasoline, you either need to move closer to where you work or get a Prius. Get rid of that big ole SUV or pick'em up truck you gotcha. A $100 a week for food when you get free breakfastes and lunches at school is a bit much. Toss a salad or two there Slim. $2400 for misc. expenses? You sure have an expensive habit. I'm just a sayin'. Only $2000 for car/health insurance? Oh yeah, you're in a labor union, so you are exempt from Obamacare and the new deductibles of $7,500.00. Studnet loan payments? That is on you, you should have gotten a job while in college. Too many video games to play, I understand.

          • stophating

            Seriously, you don't have $50/week in unavoidable expenses? My estimates are right in the middle of actual costs... Your responses during hours I'm at work for my primary job.... Guess your job is so easy, you can respond anytime.... Merry Christmas

      • Aaron

        Khaki pants and dress shirts at Wal Mart sell for ~$10 each. Besides, if they're required to buy the clothing as part of a mandated policy, they can deduct their expenses on their taxes.

        Your ad hoc argument doesn't meet mustard. Try again.

      • Truth

        Really stophating, you're looking more and more like a total imbecile.

        • stophating

          Sorry for wanting to have more than ramen noodles.... Merry Christmas, and if teachers do end up getting a raise thank you very much, as I'm certain in your mind we don't deserve waiter wages..... Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            If you can afford the type of clothes many wear to school, the can afford professional dress. As I said before, your ad hoc argument against professional dress is lame at best.

  • Aaron

    While I do not begrudge anyone the right to earn a fair living, I have two issues with teachers compensation. First is the compensation package itself. Teachers work on average, about 400 hours LESS than the standard work week. Teachers state they make less than similarly educated in other blue collar professions but that simply is not true. While they may or may not make less annually, teachers hourly rate of ~30.00/hour exceeds the majority of other professions, including engineers, nurses, and accountants.

    Next is a response to what President Campbell’s comments regarding investing in educators. She states in this article that “we’ve really got to look at investing in quality educators in the state of West Virginia if we want to see an increase in student achievement.” When Gaston Caperton gave in to teachers and increased their wages to a point that they were ranked 32nd nationally in teacher salaries, we did not see a direct correlation of improvement in our student achievements.

    I understand the job of teachers unions is to get all then can for those they represent but they need to be honest in making their argument. They also need to remember that the number mission of our educational system is not employment, it is education. Far too often, many of those in the educational field forget that one small fact.

    • Aaron

      I should have said teachers work about 400 hours less than a standard work year, not work week. They work, on average, 40 hours per week but they only work 43 weeks.

      • stophating

        I've found something nice to comment to most people, but you make no valid point..., praying for your salvation that you don't burn in hell

        • Aaron

          I doubt that recognizing the facts about the subject of teachers pay will condemn me to hell.

          Tell me hater, what should the number one priority of education be? Education or employment. If you answer nothing else, answer that simple question.

  • TheFungoKnows

    Typical labor union greed.
    Time to outlaw the WVEA and WVAFT.
    Pass time for WV to become a Right-to-Work state.

    • tiredintucker

      For all of you "haters" out there West Virginia is already a "right to work" state as far as school and public employees are concerned.
      Why is it that all of the "haters" implode when school employees ask the legislature for a salary increase? The legislature controls the purse strings and therefore they are the one's to ask. For the record they only respond about every 3-4 years.
      If the legislature would deal with this issue on a long term basis the issue of salary would not have to be an annual concern.
      It is just so frustrating to constantly read the hateful and mean and sometimes ignorant comments that are made on here when the topic concerns teachers and public education!

      • The bookman

        Am I mistaken or do teachers not receive an annual raise?

        • O M G

          The bookman, you are correct.

          • TiredInTucker

            The annual raise of approx. $588 is built into the salary schedule as an experience increment. It does not apply to starting salaries nor for those who have topped out on the salary schedule. Just some facts for the haters to chew on!!!!!

          • The bookman

            And that raise is every year without regard to performance of any kind, right? Sorry, but for those of us living in a real world, Tucker, that makes us Tired of hearing your call for more across the board!

          • Aaron

            It takes 40 years to max out in the payraise you referenced does not include County supplemental pay which is added to the state pay.

    • stophating

      So wanting enough to pay bills is greedy.. You must be one of the 1%ers who believe unions ruined America.... The fact is that unions built America and the decline of unions has been the decline of the middl class.... 98% of Americans should support unions and the other two percent are so wealthy it doesn't matter... Stop drinking the conservative Koolaid, and think for yourself....

      • WhgFeeling

        IF you cannot pay bills on your salary as a teacher then you are in sad sorry shape. You are living far beyond your means. People make it with far less than the starting wage of a teacher.

        • stophating

          Just an FYI, I rent a really bad apartment in a crappy town.... Pay all of my bills on time, but have zero savings..... If you think teachers live well, the you are either stupid, or extremely wealthy and have lot touch with the working class.... Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            How many different stories are you going to tell?

        • stophating

          Also, I notice that you respond midday when most people work.... Have a Merry Christmas (probably on my tax dollars)

    • Cburg

      You're spot on TheFungoKnows.

    • stophating

      Neither is an union... Shows your lack of knowledge .... What does the bible say about taking care of the ignorant?

  • Myron

    None of you have a clue. Besides teacher, who else brings work home with them or work on weekends?! Parents are far more to blame than teachers for poor performance.

    Also, the constant attack on teacher rights from dress codes to javing to answer to a principal is also a major problem.

    Teachers raises should be the top priority.

    • Aaron

      Um, about every other professional employee. The teachers who do work on their own time grading papers and such, the vast majority of which are elementary school teachers, are not unique in working on their own time.

      The difference is that most professionals don't have an average work day that starts around 8 AM, ends around 3:30 PM and includes a lunch break and for the majority a paid planning period.

      Generously speaking, teachers work on average, 1600 hours over 200 weeks in this state. While some may exceed that number, many fall under it, hence the average.

      The one thing I will disagree with you on is that educationally, our top priority must ALWAYS remain educating our youth, not employment opportunities for half of our government workforce.

      • stophating

        I love how you say a work day is 8-3:30---that is nearly eight hours, but in reality 8-4 is fairly common as is 7:15-3:15--- how long do you want teachers in the buildings 14-16 hours, maybe they should be paid in scrip and buy stuff in company store as well. Heaven forbid they have time to prepare for quality instruction--maybe they should drive the bus and clean the building as well. Your work estimate is way off---but then you live in fantasyland. In summation, you sir are a word that metronews would not publish.

        • Aaron

          It's not my work estimate, it comes for the Bureau of Labor Statistics and includes years of study.

          Anything else?

          • Aaron

            My first post should have said 200 days not to exceed 43 weeks.

            As to the working hours of a school teachers day, the 7.5. Even the most liberal studies conducted by the census bureau, which used teacher input on the hours worked without question, found that the average teacher worked 43 hours per week.

            Bureau of Labor statistics place that number closer to 40 hours.

            Regardless of which number you use, it is far less than the average professional works during a year for a higher hourly rate than their professional counterparts in other fields.

          • stophating

            You still failed to answer question, just choose to hide behind a government report that has been proven wrong on many accounts... Answer the questions or close your trap....

          • Aaron

            You can get rude young lady but the facts simply do not back up your arguments.

            Now what question did I fail to answer?

          • stophating

            @Aaron

            Merry Christmas..... And a happy new year... I'll be laughing at you on 1/8/14

          • Aaron

            What question did I fail to answer?

    • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

      Bullcrap. I have been a professional and manager for over 30 years and have never received overtime for taking work home. No raises for teachers until you correlate student success with an annual evaluation. Fire all the teachers! I am very plugged into our local high school and I can tell you for sure that without extra parental and tutoring help that none of my sons would have passed a placement test for math when applying for college. Moreover, on many occasions the math and chemistry teacher never had enough time for before or after school assistance since they were coaches and had to be at other sporting requirements. More BS! Again, fire all the teachers and lets where we end up. We recovered from firing the AIr Traffic Controllers from the Reagan era. Time for all teachers to own up to their brethren's shortcomings. I know they are great teachers, but far and in between. Hell in county, 10% would fail a drug test on any given day.

      • stophating

        So it's the responsibility of teachers to provide free tutoring for your child after they have already worked a full day..... Again, the public has became used to teachers donating their time without any compensation. It's time this expectation ends, most teachers now work a second job just to pay the bills.... Stop expecting something for nothing when teachers are poorly compensated.... Maybe you would get free tutoring if they were fairly compensated. I would like to commend teachers at that high school for not donating free time to disrespectful people like you.

      • Leo

        Wow, sounds like you should have paid more attention in your English/grammar classes. I hope you don't apply for any teaching jobs after you fire us all! You sir are an idiot.

        • Leo

          Well Mr.Typo, you just proved me right! Not only are you an idiot, you are ignorant.

    • Rick S.

      Well Myron, I am an accountant/statistician. I bring work home with me almost every day; and I have worked 48 of the past 50 weekends.

      • stophating

        And what is your annual salary?

  • O M G

    Our members want resources in the classroom,” Campbell said. “They want to have smaller class sizes to address the needs of all students. We want to be able to incorporate professional development and collaboration into the day to meet the needs of all students."

    This is outrageous. Not only are they asking for a huge raise, they also want less students (which means less work) and even less class time so they can work on "professional development."

    Hell, just give them a huge paycheck and let them stay home. Tha's basically what they're asking for.

    Incredible. These people have no shame whatsoever. And they obviously don't give a damn about the students' education.

    • stophating

      I sincerely hope you are being sarcastic. All of those are very real issues, and it's jerks like you that are part of the problem.

      • O M G

        Well, you're right about one thing . . . it's a problem. And the problem is that the teachers don't want to do what they ARE PAID BY THE TAXPAYERS TO DO. Which is teach!

        Test scrores are the lowest in the country. What is the teacher solution to this? Another raise. Less time in the class. Less students to teach. Brilliant!!

        You, sir, are an embarrassment to your so-called profession and succinctly explains why education in this state is the laughing stock of the country. Congratulations for contributing to it!

        LOL, respond by calling me a jerk. And you think you deserve a raise. You are a clown. But, then again, you're a teacher.

        • stophating

          You are what in my personal life I refer to as an ftard.... Love how your response comes while those that work are already there ..... I will correct your inaccuracies (because they need to be corrected)

          1. No comparison of test scores, other states don't use the Westest, and WV CSOs aren't based on NAEP tests

          2. Am I an embarrassment because I choose to not sit back and take abuse from idiots like you.... All teachers should stand up and demand respect.

          Even though I feel like I'm probably paying for it as you respond when most people should be working, I would like to wish you a Merry Christmas (hope your kids enjoy the angel tree gifts I bought with the few bucks of disposable income I have).

        • stophating

          Responding while most of the working class are already at work..... I question if you are actually a tax payer myself. Merry Christmas

  • bulldog95

    Can anyone tell me if we have won the war on poverty?

    Can anyone tell me if we have won the war on drugs?

    If you answered "No" then can anyone tell me how throwing more money at teachers is going to help education when it has not done a darn thing for poverty and drugs?

    • stophating

      Pay raises will help put qualified teachers in the rooms, and give students a better opportunity for success.

      15 years ago, there were in small counties 15-20 qualified applicants per job. Now jobs are posted for months without a single applicant. If you doubt this information attend a board meeting and ask.

      • WVIRGINIAN FOR LIFE

        Eliminate tenure, you know whereas teachers can be complete slugs and still be protected by the coveted union and their contract. Again, it's time to expose the slug type teachers and replace them while establishing their raises based on performance of the student. I can't believe teachers get raises with no measurement of success on the end product. What a joke.

        • wvu999

          There is no tenure. Every teacher is evaluated every year. Know your facts not buzz words

        • stophating

          I assume you have a masters or doctorate in education and are highly qualified yourself to evaluate the quality of teachers, and perhaps you are ignorant or have been hidden under a rock--but since senate bill 359 all teachers are evaluated annually. Just an FYI, as you seem like a gullible jerk--principals will say or tell you anything to get you out of there office.

          • wvu999

            Sounds like someone needs to get rid of a principal not teacher.

          • O M G

            LOL, he responds to everyone by calling them a jerk. This is a teacher demanding a raise to "better educate the students" and all he can do is throw out juvenile name calling.

            Do your fellow teachers a huge favor and stop posting. You're only proving why they don't deserve a raise.

          • Dave

            Hey teacher, the word you're searching for is "their" office.

            How much of a raise do you deserve?

          • stophating

            @dave

            OMG I made a typo, I know I'm supposed tobe perfect, man thanks for pointing out my flaws... Again you responded while I was working, am I supporting you also.... My back is getting quite tired, I can't carry everyone... Merry Christmas

        • stophating

          Are you still wanting free tutoring for your son/daughter? I love how you mentioned it and the chose to run away when you something for nothing attitude was exposed... Merry Christmas

      • Aaron

        Gaston Caperton got teachers pay up to 32nd in the nation. We did not see improvement in student scores. The argument that better pay raises test scores has been proven wrong.

        • Laughing

          Aaron, I'm throughly enjoying the beat-down you're putting on this teacher.

        • stophating

          What salary should teachers get according to you're expertise? Minimum wage? Response while those that work are already there.... Troll, welfare recipient.... Nothing more to say.... Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            That's an interesting question. I believe it should be based on what and where they teach. For instance, I believe elementary teachers, who work more than other teachers, should receive a higher compensation. I also believe a math or science teacher should receive more than a drivers ed/coach or a gym teacher.

            Salary wise, I'm not sure what that it is but until those changes are made, with the state of our economy, I do not favor large increases given solely so to move salaries in national rank is the responsible answer.

            Now answer your question. How much do you think teachers should make and do you favor different salaries or would you keep the current pay scale based solely on education and years of service?

          • stophating

            So now you are down to stating beliefs without anything to back it up.... Took a while, but you finally are exposed .

            A PE teacher has a very rigorous curriculum to achieve that, as does a science teacher.... Does one deserve more than another? Both are highly qualified teachers, yet you want to give more to one.... Maybe with the epidemic of obesity the PE teacher should get more...

          • Aaron

            How is what I stated not backed up given that the recent study regarding educational overhauls to the State Board of Education came to the same conclusion; in order to retain highly qualified science and math teachers, their pay should be higher than other teachers in which there is no shortage. That would include gym teachers.

            Nice try but once again the facts do not support your views hater.

          • Aaron

            And I can't help but note that you failed to answer your own question.

            You claim to be a local President. IF that is true, then you should have some idea as to what teachers should be paid.

            It's put up or shut up time.

          • stophating

            To answer your question, I could site other countries salaries in relation to other professions, but being that you know everything (then you know that Finland overhauled their education system by making teachers the highest paid professionals, and making it a respected profession)....

            In a perfect world, where hundreds of millions weren't given away to corporate interests (who have failed to invest in WV, so it is a give away), and bond railings weren't more important than salaries (you ever try to eat a bond), I would say start with 15% over three years, and then see if jobs are still unfilled---this might be enough to slow the tide of retirements, and entice a few to enter the profession....but I'm a realist and I know that would be adding 100s of millions to the budget.... So I have an alternative proposal, that is revenue neutral--

            Current cigarette tax is 55cents per pack. The national average is around 1.57/pack.... Raise cigarette tax by 1.00 per pack and dedicate whatever money that raises to teacher salaries.

            Bonus: teacher haters will have motivation to quit smoke, and this will save state money on healthcare related expenses. It would be a win win.

          • stophating

            Also, can you name one state that differentiates pay (not bonuses) based on subject and or grade level taught (you are the google master).

          • Aaron

            First, Finland actually pays their teachers less, on average than American teachers make which combined with their higher cost of living destroys any argument that one could use that teacher salary guarantees better results.

            In truth, the reason they score so much higher on PISA scores has more to do with the curriculum than anything else. That's all neither here nor there though as Finland is a country of 5 million, singular race people. To compare that to the US is not even apples to oranges, there is no comparison.

            As to your raise, 15% across the board would cost taxpayers ~180 million annually. A $1.00 cigarette tax would add ~120 million in revenues. Given that the state is currently looking at ~7% cuts, where do we come up with the additional $50 million to fund your proposed pay raise?

            And what guarantee do taxpayers have that the pay raise will lead to improved test scores?

          • stophating

            The Finns pay teachers about the Same as doctors, lawyers and engineers... Check it out

            You will notice, my suggestion was to ignore the 15% but you asked for my opinion and I gave it....

            So you are okay with the tobacco tax proposal? I would also like the tax to be applied in an equitable way to all forms of tobacco.

            How about a 10% excise tax on alcohol as well?

            While we are at it, how about an excise tax on guns, ammo, lead, gun powder?

          • Aaron

            I've studied the Finish model. Finland is a country of 5 million people with one race that teaches to the PISA test and does not have the budget constraints the US and it's individual states do. It's not an apple to apple comparison.

            And no, I don't favor increasing excise taxes to pay for education. I don't believe any one single group should be signaled out as sooner or later, regardless of the elasticity of the product, the revenue will dry up. Gambling is the perfect example.

            As I've said on other post, our education system needs revamped, including the way we pay teachers. While I don't necessarily support a merit based system as bookman does, mostly because I've yet to see a decent one offered, I do think there are ways we can create better incentives for our teachers to improve our educational system. I believe it starts with getting lousy teachers out of the class rooms but teachers and their unions do not support that.

          • stophating

            @Aaron

            Who is truly to blame for what you refer to as "lousy teachers" still being in the classroom?

            That answer is simple--ineffective principals

          • Aaron

            Sorry that I just don't agree with that. While principles may bear some of the blame, they are handcuffed by a system that prevents removal of teachers in most cases.

            The fight against charter schools is the perfect example of how hamstrung principles are. When many point out that in charter schools, principles would have more leeway to hire and fire teachers, unions reference back to the days of cronyism and lament how awful it would be for principles to have that type of power.

            Besides, by and large, principles are former teachers and the vast majority of the time, they protect their own.

            We've all heard time and again of how it's simply a matter of crossing the I's and dotting the T's to get rid of teachers but you know as well as I do, that is simply not true.

          • Aaron

            I do have one question for you. Given that the state of WV is about to undergo a considerable increase in our Medicaid cost, why wouldn't an excise tax placed on tobacco not be directed at those expenditures given the product is responsible for a sizable portion of added cost?

  • john

    I get tired of the same ole BS about how much teachers make in other states. You are in West Virginia where the pay level of almost any job that you can name is lower than surrounding states. With the average teacher pay at around $45,000 per year, what more can you ask for? A recent article stated that it takes 6 years for the majority of the college students to earn a bachelors degree for the simple reason that they are not ready for college from high school. Kids are not taught anymore in school, just sit them down in front of a computer and the teachers' aid keeps a eye on them while the teachers are down the hall in the break room drinking coffee or hanging out in the office doing nothing. I've saw this personally in two different schools that I had the occasion to be in. Its a shame; whatever happened to the ABC's of school. Students graduate high school and can't even sign their name that you can read it. If the other states pay so much more, then by G-- go there and apply. Most schools are overloaded with teachers as is, so we can stand for some to go elsewhere.....A taxpayer that is fed up with this annual crap.........

    • stophating

      Sorry ...but what does teacher salary have to do with graduation time from college.... Guess it should be my job to tutor them for free.....so sorry, I'll get right on that.

      Even if they took remedial classes that would be at most one semester.... Sorry, teachers are to blame for everything wrong in society.... Decline of families and divorce rates.... Sorry... Middle class wages... Sorry...

      Teachers must teach curriculum set forth by WV aboard of Education--- if you want students to be able to sign their names, then take that up with Gayle Manchin (wife of the senator that wants gun control)

  • looking back

    When I was choosing my career years ago and what I would study in college, I did not chose education do to the pay being low. I would think if you are going into this profession you would consider this as a weighing facotoras well, if as teachers you are going to complain about, did you not know what you would be paid and how long and what advancements in education you would need for a raise. Complain all you want and enjoy your 180 day work schedule. You had choices when you went to college to go into other fields of study. I as well as most in the state are tired of the complaining. The only way raises should occur, should be based on those that you teach and their test scores and how well they comprehend what YOU are teaching them. If you do not do the job, then you lose your job, just like the corporate world. Just do your job. If it is about pay, find another job that pays more, that is pretty simple.

    • stophating

      Everyone is an expert because they once went to school. Want to show improvement--tie the tests to passing courses/grades and force students to care, only then will you have a true idea of what students know or don't know

      • Leo

        Amen. You hit the nail on the head. Until their passing or graduation is tied to their achievement nothing will change. Thank you!

  • Laughing

    What's hilarious is that you will see teachers bombard this site with their whining and crying about how busy they are. Of course, they'll do it during the school day. You know,when they are so busy they don't have time.

    • stophating

      I'm a teacher, and I've responded to almost every post..... I didn't have to work my second (or third) job tonight, so decided to respond to all of the haters and disrespectful jerks... Do I and all teachers deserve a pay raise---HELL YES! The public has no idea the amount of pointless work that we do to justify someone else's job up the line. Come shadow a teacher for a day, wait to take go to the bathroom between classes, attend a meeting for student and parent that don't give a damn.....

      • Rick S.

        For someone with a screen name of "stophating," you sure are filled with hatred and bitterness. And if you really are a teacher, your posts have terribly discredited you and your profession with all of your name calling. I would think a teacher should be able to express valid points without resorting to immature name-calling.

        • stophating

          I'm sorry, guess I should just sit back and take the crap that people that are clearly ignorant want to dish out.... It's the fact that teachers have traditionally taken the high road that has let the public attack our profession... When I have time, I'm going to call anyone out.... A person can only take so much abuse from a disrespectful public before they choose to respond.

          Think about my screen name and maybe it will eventually make sense to you.....

          • Aaron

            That disrespectful public that you direct so much venom at pays your salary.

            Given that 57% of every tax dollar goes to public education and over half of the state employees are teachers or administrators in education, the public has a right to question where and how our money is being spent, particularly when the end result we get from our investment is what it is.

          • Aaron

            No smart answer on this one hater?

          • stophating

            @Aaron

            It was 57% about ten years ago... It is now down to about 42%.... Education spending is at historical percentage lows, and the budget has been cut each year since Manchin was elected the first time.... So rant about spending all you want, it's simply not true.

          • stophating

            @Aaron

            Sorry, guess I should just sit back and take the crap you spew out and keep my opinions to my self... Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            The numbers I cited includes higher education. The number you cite does not. The minute secondary education teachers get a raise, higher education instructors will demand the same increase so it effects the entire budget.

            What I find interesting is that while WV does rank 49th in teacher salary, K-12 we spend the 8th most on students, or nearly $12,000 per student.

            Yet we get so little for our investment. Why is that?

          • stophating

            One of the reasons for high cost is rural nature of many areas of the state--buses and fuel are expensive.

            Also, please note that when counties cut back they never, ever cut administrators--quite frequently they will cut teachers and hire administrators during the same meeting.

            Many counties have small school that should be closed and this drives up the cost per student. This is because boards of Ed refuse to do something that could lead them to not being re-elected--they want to keep collecting the easy money.

            The state board of education continually moves from one program to another without adequate time to implement, evaluate, and improve a program. They are first to jump on each and every newest, best program--and force teachers to leave what is effective. I have no proof, but highly suspect that many state department employees are receiving massive kickbacks to implement these programs.

          • Aaron

            Why is it then that teacher unions do not lobby to eliminate many of these state agencies. I believe we should eliminate the 55 county BOE's and replace them with a RESA style governing body and place more control back in the class rooms. Why do teachers not support something like that?

          • stophating

            The organizations have lobbied and it was recommended by the audit a few years ago, and since this time even more jobs have been added to wvde and resas.

      • O M G

        LOL, he calls someone else a jerk.

        All this teacher can do is throw out juvenile name calling. He/she can't even intelligently explain its position and resorts to name calling.

        With geniuses like you in the classroom, it's no wonder WV education is last in the state.
        LOL, you're a perfect example of why teachers are already overpaid.

      • Laughing

        Um, teacher, hate to burst your bubble there but my wife was a teacher's aide. I have helped out many, many times and shadowed many teachers.

        Most do not care one iota about their classes. They don't care if students learn. They don't care about anything but the next snow day and summer vacation. My wife did most of their work while they hung out in the teacher lounge, or, my favorite, head up to Walmart to run some errands.

        They're just lazy blowhards who sit around with their hand out and run their mouth about how over worked and underpaid they are.

        You know, like you .

        • stophating

          Oh, you are the spouse of a "wannabe." Someone that claims to do everything when in reality they copy papers and hopefully follow direct orders. I know where your attitude comes from....

          Merry Christmas

          • Joe

            A little advice....leave the wives out of it. Defend yiur points all you fant and fu the guys if that makes you feel good, but do not cross that line.

          • stophating

            @Joe

            Laughing's entire comment is based on info that his spouse provided to him....

  • WVU86

    If you took the word "raises" out of the teacher unions vocabulary, they would not be able to speak a complete sentence. Sad. Teacher unions = no credibility.

    • stophating

      So an organization (not an union--unions have right to negotiate and don't have to beg) should not pursue what they were directed to do by a representative vote of members.... You are a jerk... Unless you pay dues to the organization, shut your mouth--you have no say... Have a nice day

      • Aaron

        Perhaps but it seems to me the reason taxpayers fund education is to educate our youth so they're productive in society, not provide employment for a group of individuals.

        It seems to me that those demanding raises on behalf of their members have forgotten that the PRIMARY role of schools is education, not employment.

      • WVU86

        Way to live up to your screen name with the "You are a jerk" comment. As a taxpayer, I'll listen to any "give us a raise" debate ONLY after teacher unions start bartering and quit demanding. Want teacher raises? ... how about only after there are improved student scores, higher college attendance rates, fewer in-state college freshman required to to remedial courses, elimination of the (worthless) half-day faculty senate days (or whatever they are called now) which fall on Fridays and three-day holiday weekends. Join the rest of the workforce which is expected to provide more with their pay raises.

        • stophating

          Sorry Master WVU86 , I know as a lowly teacher with a doctorate that I shouldn't be viewed as an expert, you apparently know all.... And you don't even bother to do basic research to find out what an ISE day is...lazy, midday responder.... Are you on public assistance? Merry Christmas

  • Dave

    “We stay at the bottom nationwide, we’ve really got to look at investing in quality educators in the state of West Virginia if we want to see an increase in student achievement.”

    Total lie.

    • Laughing

      You want to know what is really at the bottom nationwide?

      WV student test scores.

      Fact.

      • stophating

        See my above comment, and be part of the solution...not the problem..... Jerk

        • O M G

          More name calling from an educated, raise-deserving, over-worked teacher. So deserving of a raise and so educated, he can't even intelligently explain his position. But, he is good at calling people a jerk.

          This man is a perfect example of why the education in this state is the joke of the country.

          Give this man and all teachers a raise!!

        • Laughing

          We all know one thing . . . you are a part of the problem.

  • Full Time Worker

    When teachers work a full-time job, then I will agree they should be paid for full-time work. Currently, they work seasonal jobs. I work a full time job. I do not get a Fall Break, two-week Christmas break, Spring Break, two-month summer vacation and snow days. I work during those times. Teachers have better technology than most of us to do their jobs. On snow days, why can't they work from home? Do you know where the teachers are on snow days? Shopping. Yes, the malls, WalMarts, Targets, etc. are very busy on those days.

    • wvu999

      Go to school to be a teacher. I smell jealousy and someone without facts

      • stophating

        +1

      • GF

        Try working in another industry where professionals routinely put in 50 hr. weeks all year. Sure others are jealous when they work their rear off and only get 2-3 weeks off a year for the same pay as teachers who have 12-14 WEEKS of vacation every year.

        Don't get me wrong, teachers have a very difficult job, but I believe are fairly compensated in relation to the time spent on the job. You shouldn't be paid the same salary as other occuapations when you only work 75% of the year.

  • jm

    Here we go again. In a time when all other state agencies are having to tighten an already stretched belt (and not given raises for nearly 8 years) the AFT is starting to whine about pay raises. It is a fact that the last few years, the teachers have been given a 1% raise each year. While that is not much (not even keeping up with inflation and the cost of living).... it is a hell of a lot more than the rest of the state employees.

    So, my view is to heck with giving them a raise until such time that there is sufficient money to improve the pay of all.

    • stophating

      Check your fact jm.... all state employees get longevity pay and after twenty years of service public employee longevity pay exceeds that of teachers.

      Have a nice day

      • jm

        oh..........I know the facts. Yes we do get longevity pay......... 60 bucks.......... so I guess you could say I got a 60 dollar pay raise. Taxed at roughly 40%....... Not a steadily increasing 1% per year......

        • stophating

          Oh.... But after ten years the 60 gets to a much greater sum, and after 20, you are ahead of teacher increments..... Merry Christmas

      • Aaron

        Not all state employees get supplemental pay by the counties.

        • stophating

          OMG Aaron has something correct---while everyone else is working.... Merry Christmas

          • Aaron

            Everything I've said is correct.

        • stophating

          @Aaron..... So you vouch for yourself .... Sorry, you are correct on everything... BTW who shot JFK, surely you know that answer also

          • Aaron

            Lee Harvey Oswald. I would think an educator with a doctorate would know that.

            Why am I not surprised you don't!!!

          • stophating

            So, you've also seen the still classified documents that will be released in just under 25 years... I now feel like I've been debating with a spy or Dick Cheney

          • Aaron

            If you have evidence that implicates others, I suggest you contact your local FBI office. I'm sure they would be interested in your information.