Friday, June 24, 2011

Five more school days or waiver?

Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board members say they're not ready to decide whether to add five student days to the 2011-12 calendar,  as required by the recently-passed state budget bill,  or seek a waiver.  But members reached this week say they're leaning toward the extra days.  Joe White,  Rhonda Lennon and Joyce Waddell all said they think students will benefit more from the extra class time than from the teacher work days that will be bumped.

"I'm just wondering how it's going to be paid for, but I think it's good. I think we need more time,"  Waddell said.

Some teachers say the last-minute calendar switch,  which provides no extra pay for the extra time with students,  feels like one more wallop in a bruising year.  CMS had already decided to add 45 minutes to elementary students' days, which is bound to squeeze teacher planning time.

The N.C. Board of Education met today to set a waiver process.  It's a pressing question in Wake County,  where year-round schools start their 2011-12 year July 11.  Wake's superintendent is seeking a waiver for the coming year.

CMS board Chair Eric Davis said Charlotte has more breathing room with the standard Aug. 25 opening day.  The calendar question won't be on Tuesday's agenda,  he said;  CMS staff is studying options.  Under the process approved today,  CMS has until July 28 to argue that some or all of the days would be better used for teachers' professional development.

Davis,  who's had a tough year himself and now faces a superintendent search,  sounded frustrated at fielding complaints about a change made in Raleigh.  The CMS board had asked state legislators to relax the school-calendar law that mandates when most schools open and dismiss for summer.  Instead of flexibility,  the district got a mandate that could force unpopular changes long after the 2011-12 calendar was approved.

"Late decisions being made,  decisions being made in a one-size-fits-all approach,  decisions being made far removed from the local schools,  that's the systemic issue," he said.


Anonymous said...

45 minutes per day X 180 days = 135 hours or .... well, more than 5 school days. We (CMS) should be exempt for this stupid new rule.

Wiley Coyote said...

Davis, who's had a tough year himself and now faces a superintendent search, sounded frustrated at fielding complaints about a change made in Raleigh.

....holds thumb and forefingers up, rubbing them together playing "My Heart Bleeds For You" on the tiniest violin in the world.


Why would you be frustrated about anything? All you and the BOE have done is shirked your duties onto the County and other groups.

If you're frustrated, now you know how many of us feel about the BOE times ten.

If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Anonymous said...

The state has already mandated when school starts and ends. Then the legislature decides to remove 5 teacher workdays or holidays to add 5 more days of instruction. The amount of paperwork required at the end of quarters and the semester is enough to wallpaper the district. If the school board removes the teacher workdays from the calendar, then I guess teachers can take this work home as well - we do get off work at 3:00 (oooops, I mean 4:30!) And before any of the trolls out there tell me that I only work 10 months a year - I want them to work my day - 8:30 - 4:30, with a 30 minute lunch - eating with the students (Yes, duty free lunch was passed, but not funded and with fewer teacher assistants around - more teachers eat with their students) and 1 bathroom break - that is IF the class is scheduled to have art, PE, or music that day. School board - WAKE UP and tell the state that an extra 45 min a day is ENOUGH!!

Anonymous said...

Never have I agreed with you more. Mr. Davis' portrayal of a leader at last year's school closing meetings was Bozo Drama 101. No sympathy here.

Anonymous said... question.

Anonymous said...

If the kids don't learn the material in 180 days, then the extra 5 days won't help...

Larry said...

Strange in real life when we get directives we have to adhere to those directives.

And in School learning how to deal with real life is just what it is all about.

Did we miss the miscommunication where this was a suggestion?

Wiley Coyote said...

11 Garinger grads hadn't earned diplomas

Principal of leadership school resigns after 11 ineligible students received certificates.

By Ann Doss Helms

Posted: Friday, Jun. 24, 2011

The principal of Garinger's leadership school resigned a week after awarding diplomas to 11 students who hadn't met the requirements - including the small school's valedictorian.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools officials say the error occurred at a time when the school's counseling position was vacant. A central-office staffer sent in to help check graduation eligibility knew the 11 should not graduate and alerted Garinger officials, but the school failed to notify the students and their families, said Karen Thomas, the CMS administrator in charge of counseling.

Anon 4:49....

I believe you're corrrect....

Anonymous said...

The elementary schools should be OK with the extra 45 minutes already added. I figured for MS and HS it would add 10 minutes per day. Add it to the periods around lunch and maybe the students will get to their next class on time. The legislature has no clue about how much work they are creating for the districts whose schedules have already been created and entered into the student management system for the 11-12 school year.
This is one more example of the guys in the white tower in Raleigh not knowing anything about what is really happening in the classroom.

Anonymous said...

If the school system is not going to extend the school day or ask for a waiver for a year, then here is my suggestion: use the following days: Dec 19th and 20th, Jan 23rd, Feb 20th and 21st and March 30th. Using these days will keep the most important workdays teachers need at the end of the quarters to finalize grades. Of course, that leaves only one scheduled snow make up day and some long periods between breaks for the kids. I have made this suggestion after examining the CMS Employee Calendar for 2011-12.

Finally, we must reduce the number of days allotted for testing. I can't for the life of me understand why kids can't take two tests on one day. High schools tested on June 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 6th. 4 Makeup days (1 per EOC test) took up the time until the 10th and telling kids they did not have to come. We did not provide 180 instructional days...stop lying to the public CMS.

If we are not going to utilize these days better, then demand the waiver!

Anonymous said...

as far as garinger goes i cannot find the word unexcusable in my 20 year old dictionary .
the word is inexcusable .
so much for today's education standards.

blpadge2 said...

"Late decisions being made, decisions being made in a one-size-fits-all approach, decisions being made far removed from the local schools, that's the systemic issue," Davis said.

Hello, Mr. Davis. That is the pot calling the kettle black. Most teachers in CMS (and many other districts) would use those same words to describe decisions made by the local BoE. Nice to see you getting a taste of your own medicine.

Anonymous said...

The BOE HAS to seek the waiver. Teachers are already frustrated that they will be working 45 extra min. a day with no extra they want to take 5 teacher workdays and turn them into student days. This will only cause teachers to use more of their personal time to get all of the paperwork done. Enough is enough...stop taking advantage of teachers' time and compensate them for the extra work they will be doing!!!

Anonymous said...

The choice really should be obvious. Since they have already decided to lengthen each school day, they should seek the waiver. The longer school day will give us way more than 5 extra days of instruction. Having students attend school for an additional 5 days will cost the district more money and we all know how they cry the money blues, yet funds "magically" appear when it's one of their pet projects. Plus, weren't bell schedules changed and school days increased to supposedly save money?

Anonymous said...

FYI, 45 extra minutes was added to the students' school day. Teachers will be required to be there at least 15 minutes before students arrive and at least 30 minutes after dismissal. This means that at least 90 minutes will be added to a teacher's already full day if they stay the bare minimum that is required of them. However, most teachers I know arrive way before they are required to and stay later than is required, too.

Anonymous said...

And where will the money "magically" appear to fund these extra days??

Anonymous said...

The State Board of Education has adopted a measure that allows the five days to be used to provide professional development for teachers for the coming implementation of the common core standards. This is a one year waiver due to this last minute mandate by the legislature. The waiver request must be submitted by July 7th. Our board needs to add this to their agenda for Tuesday. Call them!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps they'll "find" more in the same pot that saved middle school sports.

Anonymous said...

Waiver. I would like to know the cost to the district to provide food, transportation, electricity, heating/cooling, etc. for those extra days. UNFUNDED MANDATE.

Anonymous said...

WAIVER!!!!! I already have plans for Spring Break and I have already had 135 hours, unpaid mind you, added to my schedule! I all seriousness, this is pretty short notice. Where does the state expect CMS to dig up the additional monies for electricity, gasoline,etc.? Not to mention how CMS will have to get more $$$ to cover 5 more days of Free and Reduced breakfast and lunch...

Anonymous said...

There are two choices.

Do the five days or ask for the waiver.

Make a decision and stop whining.

Anonymous said...

The reality is that this is one more step in the de-professionalization of teachers and a blatant slap at teachers who dared to oppose the know-nothing/anti-public school crowd running the GA. On the one hand these critics claim the teachers are the problem, then those SAME critics take away days used to help develop us.

These are the inmates running the asylum. Not the teachers.

Anonymous said...


The point of the 45 minutes added to elementary school schedules was to even-out the bus schedules and save $4,000,000. But what to do with the time?

I’d like to see it used at lunch.

The way lunch works for teachers now is sort of like Lucy and Ethel at the chocolate factory. I’d let the students have double the time for lunch with two classes of students eating at the same time. One teacher would watch for half the time while the other got a little personal time. Then they’d trade. If there were time left over, later in the day I’d let the students clean the classrooms . . . . or heaven forbid practice writing.. . . . . but absolutely no studying for summative tests.

Ok, so it would take some thinking. The benefit would be to the teachers who have been getting very little extra.

Bolyn McClung
Go to for all The Search information.

Anonymous said...

No problem, as a veteran teacher I guess I will get "really sick" on those days... I can feel the illness coming on...In fact maybe all of us teachers will "get sick" on those days. Then see how much we are regarded.

Erin said...

I support five more days, but I do not support the way it was mandated by the State Legislature with such short notice. The immediate mandate is disrespectful to teachers and teaching as a profession. The idea of coming up with money for those 5 extra days plus working out the food, busing, hourly staff, schedules,and other logistics seems like a huge task to accomplish in the next 60 days before the school year begins.

I am greatly displeased with all the instructional time my children lost this year due to the new testing requirements, but I don't think this is the answer to building in more instructional days. What a mess! Just what CMS and the School Board didn't need...

Anonymous said...

I have read all the comments posted and I for the life of me cannot understand how the legislature can really believe that after they have villified teachers teachers for the last 2yrs can continue to add on responsibilities and at the last minute. I am currently working with students at non-equity schools who have said they failed test on purpose because they didn't like the teachers. Now teachers are going to have to listen to all the complaints from students and parents who are already not willing to comply with most of the daily requirements. Teacher are on the front lines and pushed to the back burner. I hope one day the people in charge start to bring back the nobility of the teaching profession.

People make the comment that teachers only work 10months a year,, but we also get paid for only the time we spend in the classroom, which does not include all of the work we have to do home. I know that this is a part of the job, but I just cant imagine a job where people work harder and for this pay. My cousin digs ditches for the power company and makes more money than me, without a degree. God bless the teachers and school workers. We need it.

Larry said...

After reading these comments and if they are from real Teachers then we need a Work for America Program.

In it we take these most vocal teachers and have them work in jobs for a year at companies so they get an idea of just how the average citizen has to adhere to time management and directives when they come about.

Yes paperwork at home and stress and even worse an unstable economic environment all adds to the insecurity as well as the scaled back benefits and increased work loads. It would be a great help as they return to the well protected government jobs and tell others just how the tax paying public has to do things in the cold winds of reality.

Anonymous said...

In CMS high schools, for all students passing their final exams, there are four mandatory EOC "make up" days. The students passing usually don't come to school period. There is justification here though; nothing ever gets done. These five more days will just be treated as "do nothing" days, will be disregarded, and students won't come to school. BAD IDEA CMS. GET THE WAIVER.

Anonymous said...


You won't be happy until everyone who works for a living hates everyone else who works. In your worldview anyone who thinks bosses are less than perfect or who dare to suggest that as 'troops on the ground' they may have something better to suggest, should shut up and 'work a real job.'

Anonymous said...

"Joe White, Rhonda Lennon and Joyce Waddell all said they think students will benefit more from the extra class time than from the teacher work days that will be bumped."

Yet again the most ignorant of the ignorant are showing their ignorance.

Larry said...

Strange comment 11:15AM

This whole board is filled with comments from workers who apparently hate their jobs and any changes to it.

My ideas to that are to change the working environment and make things better yet like an abused animal toward its rescuer I am the one who is getting attacked.

Until we get real about all the factors in this problem and how the failures in this system are showing in these boards we will never stop the final splat.

Anonymous said...

Wow--this is someone who is running for a seat on the school board?!

How about we take YOU and have have you work in a CMS "Focus" school for a year so YOU get an idea of just how the average teacher has to "adhere to time management and directives when they come about." We'll cut your salary down to an average teacher and put you on a pay-for-performance plan based on how well your students performed on standardized assessments.You'll have about 25 minutes to eat your lunch AND use the bathroom.

Work for America sounds like a great idea! Teachers would EXCEL and probably be more finanically secure and even earn a smidge of respect. They may even be able to have a whole hour for lunch..and just lunch! Imagine that!

Then again, what else can we expect from people who act high and mighty, but who have zero education experience and have no idea what the daily realities of teaching today are? I saw a pin recently that summed it up nicely: "Those who can, teach--those who can't, make laws about teaching."

Teachers are allowed to be frustrated when the workload has increased significantly over the past 4 years, yet their paychecks have remained stagnant. No one gets into teaching to become rich, but it would be nice to NOT live paycheck to paycheck. Adding 5 more days after already adding extra time to EVERY single school day just seems ridiculous. CMS will more than exceed the 5 day requirement set by the state at the last minute. This should be a no-brainer--seek the waiver.

Larry said...

Yes I guess I need to just pander, but if that what it takes to be on the board then I hope not to win.

Sorry about that folks but my employees all appreciated the fact I made sure they grew, and when I sold my companies to them they really understood empowerment.

So look forward to innovative ideas and challenges that will break the molds that we have seen. We need them for a future for the children. This is no longer a system for the Administration, teachers or parents or kids who do not want to learn. It is for the future of our country.


So thanks for the suggestion.

Ann Doss Helms said...

7:11, that's not quite right. There are two opportunities to file for waivers. Wake needs to go for the early one because their year-round schools start in mid-July. CMS can file by the later deadline (7/28? It's in the main post), which means the board doesn't have to decide next week.

Wiley Coyote said...

Adding 5 days, 5 hours or 5 weeks isn't the answer to making public education any better than it is.

Until the system is radically changed, it will continue to be mired in bureaucracy.

Here is an excerpt from an artlicle I read a few weeks ago, talking about state budget cuts and teacher layoffs.

Among the 275 pink-slipped Stockton teachers is Elizabeth Old, who has taught English at her alma mater, Franklin High School, since 2007. She's worried about how her students, many of whom only read at an elementary-school level, will learn if class sizes keep growing.

"What's going on is so antithetical to what works in education," Old said. "I'm 27. I'll be able to work somewhere eventually, but there are kids who are going to miss out on their basic education."

Now think about that. High school kids reading at an elementary level?

The question begs to be asked how they got to high school in the first place based on that reading level.

Either the educrats running the system, the teachers or both should be pink-slipped.

Anonymous said...

I'm happy that your former employees are peacefully empowered. I have yet to see any empowerment in 35 years for rank and file teachers in CMS. If you want empowerment go to a military model where a trained petty officer can really have responsibility with little or no college. Right now the micro-management brought in by Pete and his minions have finally put an end to whatever teamwork and pride that was left. How can you make a difference when so many turf wars over the years have disposed of individual saviors. Frankly, I received more respect from my boot camp CPO forty years ago than the current folks downtown. I would hope you would encourage the clowns in Raleigh to go through with a reasonable buyout so that the exit of retirees would bring CMS to a deserving standstill. Best wishes for your campaign. You still have the best looking dog I've seen so far.

Anonymous said...


I’M CONFUSED...which ain’t nothing new.

Are teacher workdays for professional development or paperwork? Is there a NCDPI legal definition for each teacher workday and are those days specially designated(themed) during the year?

For example, is there a workday in September that stresses how to get through the rest of the year and is there a workday in May that shows how not to let the students know you can’t wait for summer?

Bolyn McClung

Anonymous said...

We teachers use those work days to 1) get caught up on the piles and piles of grading we have, 2) plan future lessons and 3) call parents of struggling students. Without those days, teachers will have considerably less time to do these very important tasks. Not all of teaching happens when the students are in class.

Also, when students go eight weeks without any kind of break, they burn out. An extra day here and there easily pays for itself in increased student productivity.

If the legislature really wants to add five productive school days to the year, it should simply start the school year earlier, or else reduce the number of testing days. The fact that they didn't do this but instead simply decided to take away these very important work days shows a profound ignorance of how teaching actually works. This sucker-punch has hurt both teachers and students.

Anonymous said...

I think using the 5 days for Common Core training would be great--- mainly because if we don't do it this year... they will make us come back early for the following year and do it anyway... I like to plan during the Summer and while I have already started implementing some of the Common Core changes for my upcoming year--if CMS is going to test everyone and their grandmother's dog... it would be nice to have the extra time to prepare for ALL of the changes Common Core will entail (I.E. ANOTHER massive change to all the tests---) I keep praying they get rid of those silly CMS test---really, AP kids who take the National exam in May do NOT need to take a CMS version of previously released AP exams all mushed together...that is TWICE as long as the REAL AP exam... So, if 5 days is required---let's use it in a way that will benefit the teachers, students, and system the most---by preparing for the massive change that will happen with Common Core.

Anonymous said...

Great does this mean that the books will still be taken up the week after EOG's and now the kids will have an extra week of field days and movie days. Why do the kids need 185 days of school when the only thing that counts is the 3 to 4 days of EOG testing? If the days are required add it to the end of the day for middle and high schools and leave elementary schools alone since they now have 45 mins more each day.

Novemeber 6th election day will not be here soon enough the get the clowns off the board.

therestofthestory said...

Let me put this out here. The NC Legislature last year said now you can not fail a kid in a grade due to not passing the EOG's/EOC's. Next, not many students, particularly in the middle schools and high schools have the character to try their best on these tests especially now since their only measurement will be for the teachers, PfP.

If we want to get 5 more days of instruction in, just delay the EOG's/EOC's till the last week of May.

Anonymous said...

Teaching 185 days out of a 365 day year would sound great to most people outside of the profession. All these complaints just go to show how entitled some people feel.

Anonymous said...

To Larry, ref. Your comment that teachers work a real job in the real world...You are an idiot! Many teachers do have real life experience from the business world, and we are the ones that are probably most disappointed in the working conditions, pay, and lack of leadership we have found working to try to make a difference. There are so many road blocks put in your way, and for many of us our school assignments are made by HR people that do not look at our performance rating or expertise to utilize it best. I am not treated as a professional, but more like a robot test administrator.
My biggest gripe is to have to listen to and read constant complaints about teachers from people like you and are blaming us for trying to stand up for basic worker rights...which is done often in the "real job world".

As one writer already suggested, in lieu of us going to work on a real job, you need to get yourself into a classroom (after you pay for the education to actually do it) and get some "real life education experience" and walk ten miles in a teachers shoes. Actually have to resolve issues with parents etc. If you are actually planning to run for BOE please don't. You are exactly what CMS does not need. Another person that is out of touch with reality and only interested in their own personal political agenda and career. There are plenty of opportunities for you to work your magic in the "real job world" with unemployment running above ten percent. CMS is drowning from lack of leadership from the BOE, go way!

Wiley Coyote said...

I was married to an elementary school teacher for 12 years in a past life and all I heard from many of her friends was "they didn't get paid what they deserved".

I can tell you my ex-wife worked 190 days per year, got home from school by 2:30 and most days by 4 or 5 O'clock (many days she did nothing after school) had called parents and prepared work for the next day.

In 1989, she was making a little over $32,000 per year, while the average that year in SC was $26,779 and the national average was $31,331 per year.

Teachers on average do quite well when compared to other professions taking everything into consideration.

Here is some information from the Manhattan Institute related to teacher salaries:

Few education topics elicit as much passion as teacher pay. In any discussion of this issue, one is typically confronted with emotional testimony about personal experiences of long hours and meager pay for critically important work.

To be sure, there is some truth in these teacher responses. Many teachers undoubtedly do devote long hours, for what may seem far too little pay, as they engage in the essential work of educating future generations.

Yet the personal testimony of a number of teachers as to their poor compensation is no substitute for systematic data. If we want to have a productive policy discussion about the appropriate level of public school teacher pay, we have to start with high-quality and systematic data—not emotionally compelling personal stories.

When considering teacher pay, policymakers should be aware that public school teachers, on average, are paid 36% more per-hour than the average white-collar worker and 11% more than the average professional specialty and technical worker.

They should be aware that the higher relative pay for public school teachers exists in almost every metro area for which data are available.

Finally, they should be aware that paying public school teachers more does not appear to be associated with higher student achievement.

This report compiles information on the hourly pay of public school teachers nationally and in 66 metropolitan areas, as collected by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in its annual National Compensation Survey. We also compare the reported hourly income of public school teachers with that of workers in similar professions, as defined by the BLS. This report goes on to use the BLS data to analyze whether there is a relationship between higher relative pay for public school teachers and higher student achievement as measured by high school graduation rates.

Among the key findings of this report:

According to the BLS, the average public school teacher in the United States earned $34.06 per hour in 2005.

The average public school teacher was paid 36% more per hour than the average non-sales white-collar worker and 11% more than the average professional specialty and technical worker.

Full-time public school teachers work on average 36.5 hours per week during weeks that they are working. By comparison, white-collar workers (excluding sales) work 39.4 hours, and professional specialty and technical workers work 39.0 hours per week. Private school teachers work 38.3 hours per week.

Compared with public school teachers, editors and reporters earn 24% less; architects, 11% less; psychologists, 9% less; chemists, 5% less; mechanical engineers, 6% less; and economists, 1% less.

Compared with public school teachers, airplane pilots earn 186% more; physicians, 80% more; lawyers, 49% more; nuclear engineers, 17% more; actuaries, 9% more; and physicists, 3% more.

The Detroit metropolitan area has the highest average public school teacher pay among metropolitan areas for which data are available, at $47.28 per hour, followed by the San Francisco metropolitan area at $46.70 per hour, and the New York metropolitan area at $45.79 per hour.

Wiley Coyote said...


Check your spam filter.

My comment went into never never land.

Wiley Coyote said...


You'll find no sympathy here.

Based on your comment(s), no wonder you aren't treated as a "professional".

You wouldn't last a week working for my company.

It works both ways, as in my opinion, YOU are not what CMS needs.

My last comment went to Ann's spam filter.

I hope she is able to publish it as it fits you to a tee.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind working 185 out of a 365 days in a year. I just want to be fairly compensated for it. Please remember, teachers ONLY get paid for 10 mo. out of the year. We do not get paid for the summer months that we do not work. Basically, the legislature wants us to work more days, but keep us on a 10 mo. pay scale.
If workers out in the "real world" worked for 11 months but only got paid for 10 months I'm sure they would be griping too.

Larry said...

10:57 Please note to me where I said anything as to reference this construct of a Real World, you seem to have such a looming problem with?

I suggested a cross training program where Teachers could get out of the stress and tedium and see or even as you said reacquaint themselves with a 9 to 5, or so they seem to think, job.

This would give them some time to reevaluate their choices and give them insight into just what the current choices and stresses the average tax payers also faces each day.

As a volunteer I have seen many motivated Teachers and many who have been transformed by the system. It is not my privilege to know what caused this transformation but I can see the damage it is causing the kids in these Teachers care.

So something is going to have to be done and I am willing to do if for free and have been trying. So if changes seen scary, I can assure you they are. That is why we do all we can all our lives to increase our education to learn more to adapt to changes and find solutions to them.

So I hope you see I am on everyone's side here but I am also against the old ways of entitlement just for entitlement sake.

All the best as we move forward.

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 12:36...

That is precisely the argument where you lose sympathy.

Data shows that teachers on an hourly basis for the hous they work, make more money than many professions.

From the Manhattan Institute using Bureau of Labor statistics -

According to the BLS, the average public school teacher in the United States earned $34.06 per hour in 2005.

The average public school teacher was paid 36% more per hour than the average non-sales white-collar worker and 11% more than the average professional specialty and technical worker.

Full-time public school teachers work on average 36.5 hours per week during weeks that they are working. By comparison, white-collar workers (excluding sales) work 39.4 hours, and professional specialty and technical workers work 39.0 hours per week. Private school teachers work 38.3 hours per week.

Compared with public school teachers, editors and reporters earn 24% less; architects, 11% less; psychologists, 9% less; chemists, 5% less; mechanical engineers, 6% less; and economists, 1% less.

Compared with public school teachers, airplane pilots earn 186% more; physicians, 80% more; lawyers, 49% more; nuclear engineers, 17% more; actuaries, 9% more; and physicists, 3% more.

Public school teachers are paid 61% more per hour than private school teachers, on average nationwide.

The Detroit metropolitan area has the highest average public school teacher pay among metropolitan areas for which data are available, at $47.28 per hour, followed by the San Francisco metropolitan area at $46.70 per hour, and the New York metropolitan area at $45.79 per hour.

We find no evidence that average teacher pay relative to that of other white-collar or professional specialty workers is related to high school graduation rates in the metropolitan area.

Anonymous said...

I would like for you to find a teacher that works 36.5 hours a week! I work 8 - 4 with no lunch break (I have 20 min. to eat with my kids and most of that time is spent opening ketchup packets and cleaning up spills). That doesn't count the numerous staff/IEP meetings before and afterschool, parent conferences, and paperwork/planning done on the weekends.

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 1:49

Even considering you work 8 hours a day, you still only work 190 days, 1,520 hours and 38/40 hour work weeks per year.

Private sector employees work 260 days, minus say 10 vacation days (if they are lucky to get 2 weeks) or 50/40 hour weeks or 2,000 hours.

In 2009, the average teacher salary in NC was $42,556. Per hour that's $28.00. In the private sector, the same person earning $42,556 yearly is only paid $21.28 per hour.

I make about $37.10 per hour in my job working about 55 hours per week, with 3 weeks vacation.

That doesn't include being out of town staying in hotels 45 to 50 nights per year, which precludes me from doing anything related to home at night and sometimes on the weekend with my family.

Anonymous said...

Wiley is correct because I have calculated my hourly wage and I have no complaint. I arrive at 6:55 am and sometimes do not leave until 6 pm but that is my choice pertaining to my own work ethic. He is saying that same work ethic exists in other professions and jobs. More people have had to work longer hours due to the downsizing that occurred in this weakened economy. Everyone is having a tough time so let us stop fighting with each other.
Whatever decision is made regarding those five days, we, as a community, must demand that we stop wasting so many days with testing and better utilize all days to maximize instruction.

Anonymous said...

Both of you are correct. The only difference is THE PRODUCT. Businesses make Money. Teachers make a difference in the LIVES of Children. Elementary class room size of 22-28children. Secondary classes up to 150 children. That would make teaching more of a managerial position. Even with that, trying to compare a "paper pushing postion" with those who change lives is impossible. Please STOP trying to do so. Trachers are vested emotionally each day (year round)stressing about HOW TO REACH students despite the difficulties in their lives. This is a calling for me. I don't want much but I was led to believe that I had a contract with the state and now 25 years later that contract is Broken. In the business world I can sue a company for breach of contract. In NC all I can do is focus on reaching my students. No MBA would work for less pay and reduced benefits. Therein lies the rub.

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 8:41...

I am certainly no paper pusher. My job versus a teacher is totally different. Each have their good points and bad points, highs and lows, rewards and disappointments.

I have stated many times that the vast majority of teachers my son had in his 13 years at CMS were good teachers, but he also had a couple that should have been terminated.

It seems the city and county found money to give out raises, the state should find the money to give teachers back what they have lost since 2009.

Given the mediocre test scores and graduation rates, I would say that overall, the "product" your company is pushing, public education, is sub-par.

Anonymous said...

One poster wrote that “Larry” is exactly what the school board does not need. These narrow minded self absorbed so call business folk is exactly what the business community does not need! His partner in crime “Wiley” claims to be a business man as well, yet he spends all of his time posting.

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 9:23

Posting comments online doesn't take a degree in rocket science nor does it take much time to do it.

I follow all local government issues and CMS.

My job allows me to be able to make comments virtually anytime I want during the day and at night and weekends, I periodically read updated blogs and news stories and make my comments accordingly.

I don't know Larry and disagree with some of his positions but we both are passionate about our points of view.

Too bad if you can't handle the fact I'm able to post, what I want, when I want.

Have a great week!

Larry said...

I am sorry if anyone felt I was trying to make them uncomfortable.

To be honest it might be better to let the entire system fall around them and then come in and rebuilt it with out them, especially if that would make them feel more at home and we are so close to that anyway.

As far as Borg I have referred many people to his site but that is the extent of my relationship with him. I know he does a lot of research and it seems valid.

And let me understand his motivation over the motivation of those who are getting paid by the system, he is getting paid nothing but the pleasure of knowing that no matter what happens he will be one person who can say they at least tried.

So for everyone here I admire you for your work but mainly I extend an additional admiration to him for his tireless work for just the kids and their future.

Larry said...

8:41 I have never compared Teaching with as you said paper pushing. And am shocked you have disdain for another profession. But let's put that aside.

I understand you feel that after 25 years the State has voided a contract with you?

How? Specifics please, we need to know the angst so we can see where the vehemency is coming from.

Maybe we just do not understand? As you say some of the jobs outside the hallowed learning environment are not have some of the same issues?

Anonymous said...

What a crock! Anyone who thinks that the students will benefit from five more instructional days is delusional. For the ones who didn't learn a d**m thing during the 180 days, do you think that five more will make a difference? If they couldn't have cared less in the first place, will does five more days do?

Anonymous said...

Give teachers what they have lost since 2009? Wow! Wiley Coyote for State legislature! If that is a promise of support I can count on, then let me know where to send my campaign contribution.

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 11:25..

Teachers as a group should not bear the brunt of mismanagement by Federal, state and local governments, nor the educrat admin they work under.

With the economy as bad as it is, unfortunately government employees must bear some brunt of the downturn as do private sector employees.

Having said that, when the city and county plus some state government workers getting increases, teachers should also get some of their losses back.

The state could have found a way to do that if they really wanted to.

Anonymous said...

Larry, No Disdain for any other profession. Just the insanity of comparing business to education. Sports to education is a better comparison. There are some horible teachers in our profession. There is a misnomer that they cannot dismissed. UNTRUE. The school systme is just too lazy and fearful to do so. So those substandard teachers were kept as the result of poor leadership. Similar to the sports industry. The most successful teams are those with dedicated players who were hired by and work in SYNC with each other and the coaches. Give us the leadership that will Get results not THEORIZE and EXPERIMENT with OUR CHILDREN. Oh yes, I forgot the comparison collapses when we compare salaries. Perhaps pro athletes should only be paid per yard, goal, assist, rebound, run, outs etc. and dismissed if they have too many fumbles, turnovers, or batting averages. No pressure. Gotta run and do lesson plans for August. Gonna help with interviews for potential hires during my "time off".

Wiley Coyote said...

Comparing sports to education?

...(checks to see what planet I am on).....

Anonymous said...

See my POINT!?! It is INANE (yes inane) to compare Education to ANY OTHER PROFESSION!!! We DON"T make money... Teachers make a difference!!! Put a value on that? Evaluate it yes, we must. Let the teachers (not the unions) police our own. We are our biggest critics. WE DON"T want unmotivated slobs in the same schools as us. We want the best for OUR children.

Larry said...

5:08 May we understand what is my ultimate goal of teaching?

It is to uncover the embers that exist inside and ignite a passion that will take that person on into a future where they will never do a days work but go each day looking for another challenge.

That is also what I do as a Leader once they get under my team.

It seems you have reached your dream job and are defending it very well.

But think of a Lawyer protecting a person/group/organization from an evil situation, that also make a difference that we could never put a value on.

A Scientist who creates a new treatment or process that allow millions to have clean water in areas where so many die, can we place a value on that?

So while I admire Teachers I do have to ask again if you feel that a contract has been voided we know to know how?

Yes I have volunteered in schools and have seen some Teachers who I can only describe as Living Dead. Now the system may have been the culprit and it is not in my ability to know.

But I do know that I have seen these same Teachers over and over, year after year and even worse seen the students under their care.

That is why we need to make the system a more open and get all the people involved. Teachers are a major part of the solution, but until we get past this no one is willing to believe each other, then nothing is going to change.

So look forward to some great ideas. In fact we need more outspoken people who challenge just what we both have to say on here.

Anonymous said...

As an educator who has taught in 3 different states, I must admit this the craziest state to teach in with the mandate that often do not have the best interest of students and those individuals who work with them. Even after this year in CMS with EOGs and EOCs - test and retests, formatives, and other tests that students have to take, the students were mentally done for the year. So with the addition 5 days what do you suppose it will do for our stressed out , test anxiety students? Will it be better or another point dissasterous to the education system?

Anonymous said...

Larry, (from anon. 5:08)
Thank you for your openess and recognition of the passion. Excellent analogies.
Re: "Breach of Contract". I chose to stay in NC rather than "Go Union States" because there was a promise of a "progressive salary increase" per year of service. (MY service each year earned HIGH evaluations) There was also a promise of fiscal advancement from higher earned degrees. (so I spent my own money to pursue those degrees) There was the promise of "tenure/security" IF I continued as high quality teacher. (I NEVER expected to keep my position if I failed @ it)This enabled me to teach without looking over my shoulder and be willing to "take educational risks" to challenge my students. It allowed me to continue training professionally in the "off season" rather than wait tables or do construction. The State and CMS have violated each of these by changing the rules without the benefit of negotiation or due process. No increase in 5 years, at this rate when I retire @ 30 years I will be rated at the same salary as when I was at 21 years, reducing my pension drastically. Therefore the State who did not "invest" in our pension fund is now punishing us for their short fall. Our earned degrees will also not be valued also resulting in a "demotion" without due process. An increase in Days and hours will result in forced labor. While our benefits have been "altered" I can understand and accept inflation and cost of living adjustments. Why can't the STATE do the same? I hope this clears things up. Thank you BTW for "listening"!! That is mostly what we want!

Larry said...

Thanks for telling us and being so open. This is going to help a lot of people understand.

This will help us have a system that does more than just listens.

I advocate for Teachers. I have helped with the Teachers Group and love what Teachers do. This is not trying to get votes, it is because I admire the profession.

The first thing I would like to see in a new Super would be someone who said they would like see all the doors removed at the schools.

This would show they want to get rid of the old tribes and alliances and open the whole thing to a new open and understanding where teams ran the schools from the bottom up.

Second less from the book. The bright kids are leaving the system in droves. African Americans are the fastest growing group of Home Schoolers in the Country.

So something is amiss and we know what it is. Teachers have lost the ability to be spontaneous and adapt to a dynamic learning environment.

Now we can provide for those students who need special help. Why is it a school like is able to take the urban kids NY and NJ, say will never learn and make them better students than their suburban counterparts? So we can take care of the students with smaller schools.

So no matter what you might think, all people are listening and we all admire the work all of you do.

But like the moans and wails of a very rough economy your plight is getting drowned out along with many others. So give us some time and all of us working together on the eduction of these future makers we have, we can make our futures secure.

All the best.

Anonymous said...

Teachers really need to quit their whining. Oh, you have to work 8:30-4:30 with only a 30 min lunch? Poor baby, thats a 7.5 hour day. Plus you get a week or two at Christmas, plus a week at Spring Break, plus every holiday off, plus a good 8+ weeks in the summer- in addition to their paid vacation and sick time!! Why don't you try working in corporate america, where most people work 9-10 hours a day, don't eat lunch half of the time, and only get 2 weeks of vacation a YEAR?

People might have more respect if teachers didn't constantly play the "woe is me" card. You get paid a very fair salary considering that you only work about 2/3's of the year if that. Most of the teachers are teachers b/c they couldn't hack it in corporate america.

Anonymous said...

(Anon 8:46) I have NEVER whined about my Profession (not a job to me). I only seethe at people like you who did not pass reading comprehension in school. If you read ANY of the postings above you would conclude that WE are only concerned with the "BREACH of contract" with the State and CMS. Corporate America and MBA's would not "put up with" a company who signs an agreement for a salary and then is told, "Oh, we changed our minds. You will now work more days and hours and get paid less. In addition we will increase your management load, reduce your supplies and ask you to produce more." Any SUCCESSFUL Corporation knows that you cannot treat employees in this Fashion. So Please Stop comparing Teaching to YOUR "JOB"!

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 5:14...

It is obvious you haven't worked in the private sector...

You also fail to understand by working for the state, you work for us, the taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

I have worked in the private sector for same amount of time as I've worked for the state--30 years total, and I agree with 5:14. Most folks in the provate sector who had a contract with an employer who did not meet their contractual obligations would seek a legal remedy or find other employment.

And those of us who "work for us, the taxpayers" pay taxes just like you do. In addition to working for the taxpayers, we are accountable to our stduents, their parents, our administrators,the superintendent, the local school board, the state school board, and the legislators.

It's obvious you have not worked in a classroom (just heard about it from your wife doesn't even come close).

Wiley Coyote said...

Anon 1:05

You need to remove yourself from the self-appointed pedestal you're standing on and realize that you nor your job is any different than mine or any one else out here raising a family, paying taxes and paying bills.

This "I have a noble profession because I teach children" falls on deaf ears here.

I do not know what it is like to stand in your shoes in a classroom anymore than you know what it's like to stand in mine or travel 60 to 70 days per year being away from my family.

As far as "hearing it from my wife", I heard plenty when she was attacked by two parents and being in the middle of the district trying to cover it up as they didn't want the publicity.

I heard plenty about sweeping "teaching to the test" guidelines under the rug so students could pass more easily.

I heard plenty about failed programs that some Dr. of so and so implemented that did absolutely no good and actually was a detriment to the students being treated like guinea pigs under it.

And as you, I am accountable to my boss, the Exec VP, the President and the Board of my company and also my clients and customers.

Anonymous said...

My feet are firmly planted on the ground, and I have no desire to be on a pedestal. No, I don't know what it is like to stand in your shoes, but I have held a job that required travel and worked 50+ hours a week. My private sector job was every bit as noble as my public sector one, and I didn't leave "Corporate America" because I couldn't "hack it." I left because I wanted to be an educator.

The point is teachers have valid concerns about their working conditions. If someone in another profession voiced similar concerns, I doubt they would be bashed and belittled that way teachers are. (Go back and read 8:46.)

Larry said...

Before we recreate the Hatfields and McCoys lets come together and focus on the real enemy which is change.

We need to equipt children with something we did not find in great demand during our earlier lifetimes, the inate ability to jump, roll, or dig out of the changing landscape.

We owe them at least that.

Wiley Coyote said...


Until - the bleeding heart progressive educrats and politicians take their collective heads out of the dirt and realize people live where they live, stop trying to gerrymander school lines to "spread the poverty", realize whites and blacks are fleeing CMS, the poverty level at CMS is 52% (we think but can't check it per the USDA yet another branch puts it at 29%) yet Mecklenburg County poverty rate is about the same stated by one government source at 29%, that Mecklenburg County is 60% white and CMS is 33% white, that more people are opting out of the county in favor of Union county and schools in Ft. Mill, private schools, etc, etc, etc.

CMS will never get any better than it is, only worse.

I could do two more run-on sentences worth but you get the idea.

What we owe kids is that it doesn't matter what your household income is or what skin color you have, that you have the ability to learn and those two labels mentioned do not define you.

If we have quality teachers, support and infrastructure in the schools, it shouldn't matter whether one school is 99% black or 99% white, 2+2 is still going to equal 4 yet bleeding hearts like Wendy Kopp will tell you different.

Edwin said...

I would like for you to find a teacher that works 36.5 hours a week! I work 8 - 4 with no lunch break (I have 20 min. to eat with my kids and most of that time is spent opening ketchup packets and cleaning up spills). That doesn't count the numerous staff/IEP meetings before and afterschool, parent conferences, and paperwork/planning done on the weekends.