For those who think having a union means nothing, I suggest you look very closely at the data below from the National Education Association.
Which state ranks highest for average teacher pay? NY is number one. It is fully unionized. The UFT started that charge for better conditions for teachers in the 1960s and early 70s. Then, the unionized Westchester and Long Island teachers led the way to increase NY teacher wages from the 80s until the Andrew Cuomo years. Do you think NY is number one without unions? The states that round out the top five are all heavily unionized.
Where are teacher wages rising fastest now? You guessed it if you said it was mostly states where teachers were willing to go on strike. Washington is number one followed by Oklahoma. West Virginia is at four. NY is in the middle of the pack here at 22. I think the last teacher strike in NY State (illegal of course) was 1999.
Please note also that Wisconsin, where teachers have to opt into their unions each year and collective bargaining rights were decimated by former Governor Scott Walker, now ranks 45th in terms of rising wages. I think we can safely conclude that the data shows that in states where unions are weak, the teachers don't do very well.
I am not saying unionization is the only factor that leads to higher wages but following this fairly simple formula that is easier said than achieved will generally succeed:
Educators United + Militancy = Better Wages and Working Conditions.
What are you doing to make this happen?
I'm glad we're the highest paid teachers in the country, but don't forget how expensive it is to live in New York especially in NYC and the surrounding suburbs. I'm at top salary and I'm close to broke if it weren't for my TDA.
Cool, now factor in taxes and cost of living. And how long it takes to get to max. You are bending stats.I bought a condo in Vegas in 2018 on the Las Vegas Strip which is a luxury highrise property. It cost $272K. In NYC, that would be $2 million, maybe more. In Vegas, right off the bat, you save about 11% in state taxes. Your "we are ranked #1" speech so we need a union is misleading at best. Based on reel estate alone, NYC teachers should make 5-10 times what Nevada teachers make. Also, Chicago reaches max after 14 years.
So you are proud of 1.5% raises. That's what the union got us. Sad!
Vegas has a strong, independent teachers union that I respect. They are 11th for fastest rising wages. With a weaker or nonexistent union, NY falls way down this list, cost of living included or not.
You ignored several other points. Please don't talk about the amazing nyc teacher salaries while ignoring cost of living, real estate and taxes.
Jeff is spot on. An extra 10k im income doesn't help me when my home costs 800k more.
Educators United + Militancy = Better Wages and Working Conditions.
What are you doing to make this happen?
The Answer is nothing.
If whining was an Olympic sport, some of the commenters here would be gold medal winners
Woes be me I can buy a luxury high rise apartment on the Vegas strip with my terrible NY teacher salary.
How many Mississippi teachers can afford that?
Wages, as every first year economics student knows, are not driven by location or by union agitations, but by productivity.
Teachers are the classic example of Baumol's cost disease or the Baumol effect.
So teacher wages rise with other wages in the human resource pool not because of where the pool is (the location) or because of the cost of living in that location, but because of the supply and demand of human resource productivity.
The flattening curve for NY teachers and the steepening one for teachers in other states has little or nothing to do with unions or union membership.
This is just another example of the unions claiming credit for something they can't and don't do. Mulgrew is not the only union rooster that takes credit for the dawn.
Wages in states that have growing demand for educated and skilled workers (think South and West of NY) are experiencing wage increases because of the demand for human resource (that is, educated and skilled workers).
Teacher salaries move up even though they are not more productive because other wages move up.
Of course, unions do play a small part in holding up wages in weak markets like NY and in pushing wages higher in strong markets, but most of the wage scale is determined by factors the union has nothing to do with.
The wage premium for union members has been and is in steady decline. And, its decline is owed in large measure to greater premium in job security and to the broken Phillips Curve.
😂😂😂 Cost of living is insane here! 100k for a home, mortgage, day care, bills are out of this world. I get what you are trying to do James, however, nobody could survive with a family, hence why everyone is leaving.
Maybe next week you will have an article about the maricopa audit. Since you firmly believe there was no fraud. Why are 80 lawyers from Perkins Cooey (clinton people) desperately trying to stop the audit, forcing a judge to recuse himself to get a dem judge with ties to them??? For an audit ??? Does not seem like there was no fraud, Maddow scared shitless on msdnc. Cannot wait to see the results.
According to Shelley's, "Wages, as every first year economics student knows, are not driven by location or by union agitations, but by productivity."
According to the Economic Policy Institute,
"From 1979 to 2018, net productivity rose 69.6 percent, while the hourly pay of typical workers essentially stagnated—increasing only 11.6 percent over 39 years (after adjusting for inflation)."
Ok, use the 3 states mentioned, NV, MS, NY. Average is 45, 55, 85. Take 10 off NY because of additional taxes. 45, 55, 75. Now do real estate. The guy above said a luxury highrise in NV was 272K. I imagine MS would be way less. Say 200k? NY, he said 2M. Call it 1.5M. At that 10-20k extra per year in salary it would take someone 100 years to have enough to buy that same condo in NY. We are underspaid by a lot. UFT has done nothing. It would close the gap if they would pay us for spring break 2020. Joke, of course...
One good thing is if you make it to full pension, you can retire and live off your pension in one of the cheap states. Your pension will be equal or even more to what the average teacher makes.
My wife took a year off to take care of Kara when she was a baby. We did fine. My wife took the better part of another year off to take care of both of our kids. We got by on my salary again. We never touched our TDAs. I am fully aware that the cost of living is high in the NYC area but we are not heading for the poor house with our wages and benefits.
When you folks leave with your union-negotiated NY pensions to the promised land of low tax states where you will live well, you are making my point that NY teachers are not doing that badly.
The Maricopa County election audit comment was attached to a legitimate on-topic comment so I printed it even though it was way off-topic.
My response from the Guardian:
Months after Donald Trump’s election defeat, Republicans in Arizona are challenging the outcome with an unprecedented effort to audit results in their most populous county – all run by a Florida company, Cyber Ninjas, with no elections experience.
The state senate used its subpoena power to take possession of all 2.1m ballots in Maricopa county and the machines that counted them, along with computer hard drives full of data. The materials were then handed to Cyber Ninjas, a consultancy run by a man who has shared unfounded conspiracy theories claiming official election results are illegitimate.
On a since-deleted Twitter account, Cyber Ninjas owner Doug Logan used hashtags and shared memes popular with people promoting unsupported allegations casting doubt on Biden’s victory. Logan says his personal views are irrelevant because he is running a transparent audit with video streamed online.
“There’s a lot of Americans here, myself included, that are really bothered by the way our country is being ripped apart right now,” Logan said. “We want a transparent audit to be in place so that people can trust the results and can get everyone on the same page.”
Logan refuses to disclose who is paying him or who is counting the ballots, and will not commit to using bipartisan teams for the process.
The Republican-dominated Arizona senate refuses to let media observe the count. Reporters can accept a six-hour shift as an official observer but photography and note-taking are prohibited. It would be a violation of journalistic ethics for reporters to participate in an event they were covering.
The state senate has put up $150,000 for the audit but Logan has acknowledged that is not enough to cover his expenses. A rightwing cable channel, One America News Network, raised money from unknown contributors which went directly to Cyber Ninjas. Logan would not commit to disclosing the donors and would not provide an estimate for the cost of his audit.
Cyber Ninjas plans to have teams of three people manually count each ballot, looking only at the presidential and US Senate contests, which were won by Democrats.
Logan said the counters were members of law enforcement and the military as well as retirees. He would not say how many were Democrats or Republicans and would not commit to ensuring the counting teams are bipartisan."
This audit is about as legitimate as a 3 dollar bill.
Now, please get back on topic. Thanks.
I'm resigning after next year with 20 years, at 42 years old, because it is that bad. I will have zero income for 13 years and then a tiny pension at 55. The job, any job, is supposed to be tolerable.
can someone who lives in queens please check in on James, I think he lost his mind with this last post. anything to make his point about our union
Always heard the following: ‘Being a NYC teacher—You never get rich’—especially with a low starting salary—which was true because many including myself had to work a 2nd after school job to make ends meet which was possible due to a 6hr, 20 minute day back in the days of the 70’s and 80’s
But at same time off —salary increments, excellent benefits, seniority rights, TDA growth, full vacation and summer pay, 10 days a year for sick bank, per session for professional development, paid maternity leave—and of course a Tier 4 retirement —which is still one of the best in the country and the 55/25 was great for thousands. Plus, it was a nice feeling to know you were earning a nice nice 6 figure salary at 22 years of service which now goes to a max of about $129,000.
However, it is very understandable that UFT members are frustrated because over the years—a 15 year longevity turned into 22 years, 8.25 TDA turned into 7%, Tier 6 is here, retro pay over a 7 year period, and that dreadful 2005 contract that basically did away with seniority rights, creating an inexcusable ATR pool of thousands of qualified instructors since 2007, the waste of time with open market transfer and hiring halls—and the onset of principals turning on veterans—for getting newbies at a cheaper rate.
And the future of Healthcare for current and retirees remains uncertain. We need a strong union and all are counting on Mulgrew to finally step up to the plate —to avoid any more deterioration of many benefits that came at the cost of never really getting rich..
Shelley. Yet the increase in productivity far surpasses the increase in real wages over the last 5 decades. The level of inequality has also grown. Wages rise when capitalists allow them to, that is, at a whim, unless they are pressured to do something, as Amazon was when they went to 15$. Unions, at their best, bring that pressure. Wage increases do not happen on their own.
128k as of this May...If you started at 22, you wouldn't reach max till 45, at the earliest. Max of 128k. In nyc. Not good. Nothing to crow about.
I'm glad someone mentioned the big joke of the hiring halls. I went to one in August 2019. Most schools were in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, so it was useless going there if you were a Queens teacher. Also there were representatives there in their twenties to talk to which I found insulting. Also, all you did was drop off your resume. Nobody was hired on the spot like they used to do.
As a para, watching people say 128k is not good, all I'm thinking is please, I'll take the salary you hate. We max out at around 53k. That's the real bullshit salary. Unity Caucus/leadership does nothing for paras.
7:54: I agree your pay is crappy, but do you have a Bachelors Degree, Masters and do you lesson plan and grade?
7:54, become a teacher. A lot of Paras do, nothing stopping you. But remember, with the salary comes responsibilities.
One of my Paras hasn't helped my online class all year, so if you ask me, 53k is too much in his case. To the other para in my room who has to take up the slack, she deserves a raise.
You know, outside of the DOE, Paras are observed.
Actually, unity has done more for Paras. Whenever asked to do anything the Paras in my school refuse, not in their contract. Teachers can't say this.
I’m not a UFT apologist, but to do this job without a union would suck.
Go talk to people in the Carolinas. They coach 3 sports, drive the bus to the game and fight for their jobs each spring. Oh, and they work a lot harder.
I’ve been on the job twenty years. I have never been questioned about a report card grade and I bring no work home.
There is ample time to pick up a second job with our schedules.
And you retire at 55 and move to a cheap state? Not a bad gig.
I don’t enjoy the job(quite honestly, I’m bored out of my mind doing it at this point). However, when I leave at the end of the day, I don’t think about the job or the kids. Each morning, I put together some bogus lesson which nobody does and I move on with my day.
There is no accountability and nobody cares and we make six figures. This is not the real world.
You want accountability? Go to Long Island if you can get hired and deal with the politics and parents and consultants up your you know what and pay a ton for your benefits and have a crappy 403B.
10:20 Yes to the degrees. We all have different responsibilities, and in the case of paras, the responsibilities are consistently changing, with new ones being added. We certainly do plan, and when teachers are low on time, we grade. This is about an exchange of labor for a wage. Are our bodies, our labor, not of the same value? Are paras worth less? Do we not deserve more?
10:20: Is lesson planning worthy of a 70k$ difference in pay?
ICEUFT supports our paras. Case closed.
Already given about 23,000 in dues to UFT, they are done for life if this next contract does not bode well.
@Jeff our pensions would be terrible, be like working 20 years for descent TDA and shit pension
lol james 😂😂😂😂 about as valid as a 3 dollar bill yet one of the most powerful lawyer firms has close to 100 lawyers trying to stop it? Having a judge recuse itself. Wasit till your head explodes, get a therapist may need it.
I understand the pension will be terrible, but that's the decision I've made. Just not worth it anymore. 20 and out. 1 more year.
When you can cite a source beyond the conspiracy theorist right, I will take what you say a little more seriously.
Re: the cost of living argument: Ask someone in a private, charter or (non-unionized) Catholic school locally. Better yet, ask 2 Catholic school teachers, one in the FCT and one who's not.
When the Catholic school I was in was unionizing another former UFTer (at the time) said it best: "Even a SH!T union is better than NO union!"
1029, same excuse, uft is horrible but better than nothing. You can pay $1500 for that. I'm not.
Agree with James to some extent on nyc teacher pay but what’s kept us away from the poor house is low inflation. Grocery bills and home prices outside of cities on the rise. Inflation is about to rise and I’ll bet spring break pay our next raise won’t keep up.
Hmmmm sounds like some good old fashioned transparency is needed in all things election related. What type of American would ever fight against that? Imagine not letting anyone examine ballots or other election materials up close and personal? Insurrectionist behavior! Any election or audit official who has done so within the past 6 months should be arrested.
MSM sources are no more reliable than a 1-800 psychic hotline. The few journalists left in this country do not work for MSM. It’s crossing a minefield of lefty and righty crazies in search of accurate info but it’s out there? One thing I know with no doubts...all MSM is propaganda that pretends to be news. If that’s what you’re relying on, you’ve been indoctrinated and need to reprogram yourself.
926. Thank you James/ICEUFT. As well as MORE Caucus and Solidarity. They always put paras concerns in their platforms. Regarding a stronger salary, Ive had our District Rep tell us it will never happen and to give it up. Lovely stuff from leadership.
A friend of mine who worked in a catholic school in Nassau confronted a superior about a female colleague being harassed by a donor. Guess what? They were both fired. Why? No union.
I am not a UFT shill, but good luck negotiating a pension with no union
You’re right 3:19. Fortunately for me there will always be enough people like you to keep it going. I feel bad you’re paying my way but I’m still willing to look out for me and save a lot of money. Thank you though.
Most paras work hard and deserve respect. I know paras (and subs) who used the position as a stepping stone to becoming principal (yes, started as a para), AP, teacher, school psychologist and guidance counselor. Other potential jobs are librarian, speech therapist, vision teacher, and OT and PT. As far as I know, all non-admin jobs are on a teacher schedule with teacher salary.
I said a week ago that this blog is just a bunch of scabs constantly complaining so they can justify their disgraceful free riding. Nothing you say, James will persuade them. You're in bad company.
Bunch of freeloading scabs AND a bunch of suckers who pay our way. That’s the UFT membership.
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