Regarding the teachers' strike in Chicago, Hawaii's teachers are much worse off but have not decided to strike yet.
Our pay cuts have been excessive and our patience is not infinite. Federal mediation has failed. We make about half as much money and have a much higher cost of living than teachers in Chicago.
The governor's contract would have linked our pay to student test scores. If students don't do their homework and are never read to by parents, why should that affect teacher pay? I don't mind being held accountable for my performance, for student growth, for developing myself professionally or for other factors within my control.
Special education teachers or those working with economically disadvantaged or English language learners would not be treated fairly in a score-based system.
Parents may be under the mistaken impression that teachers are just baby-sitters, and that teachers will come to school no matter what for the sake of the kids. While we love and honor children, we need money to pay our bills.
Unless we strike, will our reasonable and humble requests for fair pay and respect be heeded?
Nikan Alexander Arapoff