At this point in time, everyone has heard the phrase “Red for Ed,” an educational advocacy group. Leesville’s teachers have been a huge part of this fight, working towards better working conditions for teachers. One of the recent improvements for teachers involves a pay raise. Well, at least the public thinks there was a pay raise.
Although the recent pay raise has helped some teachers considerably, it was practically nonexistent for others. Teachers who have been here for many years received lower pay raises than new teachers. Why is that?
The differences in the pay raises make it seem as though some teachers are valued more than others. However, it seems backwards. Shouldn’t the teachers who have been working for years receive more? Or, is the system right to pay the new teachers more during pay raises? Either way, who has the right to decide this?
Mrs. Dinkenor is teaching for her twenty-third year at LRHS. She is a hard-working and kind-hearted teacher who spends countless hours working, whether it’s grading her AP English IV papers or coordinating graduation every year.
When asked about she has benefited from the recent pay raise, Dinkenor replied, “There was a pay raise?” She went on to explain that her recent pay raise was not enough money to provide a formal dinner for one night.
Similarly, Ms. Cade is also an outstanding teacher and person who is loved by everyone whether she is teaching social studies or coaching soccer. She has started her second year teaching here and has benefited from her pay raise, unlike Dinkenor. Since she is a new teacher, she has been able to use her recent increased income to help pay off her student loans.
Both teachers made it clear that their pay does not influence their motivation to be great at what they do. However, Cade raised a valid point by pointing out that it would be more difficult for her to perform wholeheartedly if she was unable to pay her bills.
Every teacher’s situation is different. Some have large families to support while others just have themselves. Large pay raises are welcomed by new teachers trying to pay off their student loans, however, they would also be accepted by more experienced teachers trying to support more than one or two people.
The new teacher pay raise has its pros and cons. The newer teachers, who received a large increase, were appreciative and grateful. However, the older teachers, who did not receive a large increase, may now be wondering why they are not being awarded as much money as people who are new to the job they have spent years working hard to do well.