Almost all people in the world go through the long journey of studying at school. This journey is always full of numerous events that help students prepare for a real life. One of the leading positions in this period takes a teacher, who goes to great lengths to efficiently get the message across. A public school teacher is a person who makes his or her own contribution to the society’s well-being despite the fact that he/she is usually underestimated. Without teachers, people would not become who they are now due to the fact that teachers meet children at a very young age and lead them up to the point, when they are mature enough to make their own choice. Nevertheless, teachers’ hard work is always undervalued by the fact that their salary is small in comparison with the amount of work they have to do. Therefore, public school teachers should be definitely given a pay rise due to many factors that should be examined.
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First, teachers at public school have a small salary so that it is even hard for them to provide themselves with the basic needs. This does not correspond to the personnel of private schools whose funding depends on rich parents’ investment. Public school teachers have much to do and come to terms with the fact that their profession demands much but gives less. Spade and Ballantine (2011) found “traditionally teachers have been called the “economic proletarians of the professions” and the data bear this out. Salaries of new college graduates, who have become teachers, are considerably below those of new college graduates who chose a number of other occupations” (p. 114). Without a doubt, this is not fair as teachers are responsible for the future of the nation and sometimes can hardly make ends meet.
Second, teachers work is usually characterized as “overtime” labour:
The work that teachers do away from children, preparing lessons, marking work, recording results, and organizing materials for learning, is the most invisible part of their job. Some time is spent on preparation at school, for example, at lunchtime or before teaching begins. However, much of it is conducted privately at home, away from school (Campbell, 1994, p. 83)
Subsequently, many teachers have prolonged working hours for which employees usually have a bigger salary. In the teachers’ case, this is impossible as they cannot get more, even when working 24 hours.
The third reason that teachers must have a bigger salary is because their life is like a “picture” for the whole school. They should represent and show only the best features of their character so that children will imitate their line of conduct. Teachers should always dress in an appropriate way and speak their mind in the way that no “extreme” words are used for children to gossip about. Moreover, teachers should always be careful while choosing a place for a rest, where they may come across children with their parents who will definitely watch what the teacher is doing, what he or she orders and how behaves. According to Glenn, Moss and Schwab (2005), “Teachers are often marginalized as mere technicians and offered little autonomy or respect” (p. 1). Without a doubt, teachers have little option of what to do without being punished by a principal or students’ parents. Consequently, teachers at public schools should be given a kind of reward with the help of a bigger salary for the fact that they get little respect and are limited in their actions.
Finally, teachers are always subjected to a great level of stress. Every year, public school teachers meet different students with versatile standpoints and types of behavior. Some of them try to efficiently do all their tasks and respect their hard work. Other children omit doing homework but only spend time with their friends and in social networks. The last ones do not understand that the teachers’ role is to help them gain all necessary knowledge for the future, which will help to be successful in life. Moreover, such types of students always quarrel and provoke angry emotions among teachers who just cannot turn a blind eye but try to resolve the situation. Some of them even cannot cope with such pressure and quit their jobs. According to Nieto (2003):
About 20% of new teachers leave during the first 3 years of teaching, and the rate has generally increased in the recent past. Even more alarming, the schools most effected by teacher dropout are those that could most benefit from stability in the teaching force: Researchers have found that nearly half of all new teachers in urban public schools quit within five years (p. 3).
Teaching is the occupation that some people even dread thinking about. Sometimes public school teachers play the same role in students’ lives as parents. They need to work hard while having extra hours, resist controversies, be role models for children, find approaches to every child – this is the small list, which can be endless. Without a doubt, to some extend teachers are even responsible for children upbringing but get no reward. Teachers, not physicians, doctors or waiters shape the future of the country. Sarsani (2006) states an interesting idea, “Teachers thus determine to a great extend the character, capacity and destination of the nation. The quality of nation depends upon the quality of teachers” (p. 6). Therefore, teachers deserve to be heard about the issue of the pay rise and a better feedback about their work in the society.
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