Teachers waive appreciation week Comments on Stories, posted by Editor, Danville Weekly Online, on Mar 13, 2009 at 10:02 am
For years now the tradition at Greenbrook Elementary School has been that during March parents would collect donations, cook food and put together gift baskets during Teacher Appreciation Week.
This year though, teachers are asking for a little something different from the parents as a show of appreciation. Instead of luncheons and cards, they are requesting that parents show how important teachers are by helping preserve education in the San Ramon School Unified District.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, March 13, 2009, 1:41 AM
Posted by darryl, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 13, 2009 at 10:02 am
Everyone should appreciate the work of teachers. Their commitment to their students is something we should all strive for in all of our endeavors. That being said, I think the teachers should be contacting their own union, the CTA, regarding cuts and budget deficits, not the property owners to pass the new assessement. It is due to the restrictions placed on school districts by the union that makes our situation in California's school system dire.
The tenure system in CA is rediculous. There are teachers who should not be employed, but due to the "tenure system", they earn a high salary and can not be touched by the school district. Most jobs pay on a performance basis and so should the school system.
We always hear about how teachers are underpaid. That is bogus. Teachers that have been in the SRVSD at least five years earn close to $80K, have great benefits, and will be rewarded with a good pension when they retire. That doesn't take into consideration the 2.5 months off for summer, two weeks off for xmas, and a week for spring break. What other job in the public sector would allow so much time off, provide so many benefits and pay a good salary?
Please keep that in mind as you go to the polls for another parcel. tax. CA has one of the highest payroll taxes in the nation. The sales tax is being increased another 1%. Our property taxes (including assessments) are already at 1.25%...and now we are being asked to pay an additional assessment. Maybe the union needs to stop building a bureacracy and give the dues back to the school districts they claim to help.
Posted by John, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 13, 2009 at 1:20 pm
As a 25 year realtor in the San Ramon Valley I have had the opportunity to speak with hundreds of people who have expressed a desire to relocate their families to our lovely communities. When I have inquired as to why they want to move here the overwhelming majority say that it is because of the stellar reputation (supported by high standardized test scores) of the schools in this district.
It has always been the case that high quality school districts help to support higher real estate property values.
Many other school districts in our area are facing similar issues and are also planning to help alleviate the situation with parcel tax measures. Failing to pass a $144/year parcel tax could subject us to losing tens of thousands of dollars in our property values,
particularly if some of our neighboring communities pass their measures.
Let's do it for our kids...and our property values!
Posted by Anonymous, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 13, 2009 at 11:55 pm
Get your facts straight. You aren't being asked to pay an additional assessment, just continue the one that already exists. And in fact it is much smaller than the ones in the surrounding communities. Let's count ourselves lucky.
And cheers to the Greenbrook teachers for a good idea in tough times.
Posted by Tara, a member of the Greenbrook Elementary School community, on Mar 15, 2009 at 10:48 am
At this point each of you with negative comments should stop worrying about the teachers unions and realize how our children will be effected by not passing Measure C. Things are so dire right now we have to look at the immediate fix to ensure our children . . .our future leaders . .. receive the education they need to be a part of this very competitive world. Fight your teacher union battle another time. This is not the time for that.
Posted by Lynn, a resident of the San Ramon neighborhood, on Mar 16, 2009 at 7:50 am
For the record Darryl, San Ramon teachers would have to be employed almost 20 years and have more than 75 units in professional units - additional schooling for them - (that they themselves pay for to remain in the cutting edge of best teaching practices) to make 80K. And because of the COLA in California, many teachers pay additional each month for 403B programs because the pension will NOT be enough to live on. (and teachers do not get social security.) I do agree we get taxed to death and this is more of a dysfunction of our entire government system and the way California needs to do better business as a state.
But Tara, you bring up a great point - this is not about teachers. This is about our future, the students, in our schools. THE CHILDREN, they will be the ones that suffer without art, science, and technology. Students who struggle will get worse in oversized classrooms, and those in need of additional help with counseling and social programs will be left to fend for themselves. And when these new, enthusiastic teachers get cut from classrooms, we will lose some of our best and brightest, many of these teachers highly trained in inclusion and supporting a community environment within the classroom.
Our advanced students will lose enrichment programs that push their skills, such as GATE programs and enrichment. Intervention, spanish, and libraries will no longer be available for students. Teacher assistants (paraeducators) will also be cut. Our reputation in San Ramon for turning out top students will be at risk without these additional resources.
Most importantly, we all know what happens to kids who lose the opportunity of being involved in a variety of things they love... they will find things to do with their time... negative things... that will be a detriment to all of us in our communities.
I still can't believe we have to fight so hard for education. In a state where we are already ranked 47th. We should be ashamed of ourselves.
Posted by Katie, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 16, 2009 at 9:19 am
And for the record - SRVUSD is the second LOWEST PAYING district in the STATE. Those great benefits you mentioned are not-so-great. Teachers pay for their health benefits out of their monthly salaries. Many opt to use their spouses benefit packages, if they can, in order to keep their entire salary.
You are more than welcome to take off 2 weeks at Christmas, 2 week for Spring Break and 2 month during the summer. It's called UNPAID vacation. Teachers work side jobs during the summer for a reason.
Voting "no" on a local bond measure doesn't address any of the teacher's union issues that you mention. Many teachers would agree that the tenure system needs to be fixed, but a parcel tax has nothing to do with that.
Posted by Kirsten, a member of the Sycamore Valley Elementary School community, on Mar 16, 2009 at 10:35 am
Perhaps if you had paid more attention to an "overpaid" teacher, you would know how to spell "ridiculous" correctly and use "cannot" in a sentence. We need the best and the brightest teachers for our children and we need to compensate them accordingly.
Posted by Ron, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 17, 2009 at 9:30 am
Why do I want to add another tax to my already high taxes? This is about trusting the S.R.U.S.D. to spend the money wisely. I dont have any faith in them and this amounts to a bail out. I agree we need the brightest teachers and will pay for that, even some more but where are these brightest teachers? They are not at Los Cerros. The sysyem does not encourage the best and brightest. They all teach in the other 46 states that are above CA.