Saturday, June 12, 2010

Defending Louise Zurowski

This letter in the Norwich Bulletin apparently refers to Louise Zurowski's letter "Education more about profit than children".

The working for free reference was just that, a reference and taking it literally is a bit intellectually dishonest. Mrs. Zurowski is herself a retired teacher of periodical schools. She has been a thoughtful and convincing critic of the Teachers Unions and crazy public school policies for many years now. She is an American citizen and has the right to write the paper. I always enjoy her letters
which I consider gems amid the usual slush and I have only disagreed with one of them. I wish she would write more.

The public pays teachers and the public pays the school budgets. We live in a democracy and Mrs. Zurowski and anyone else for that matter has every right to speak her mind on what the proper level of compensation ought to be. If you don't like that then that's just to damn bad.

I would have Mr.Boada and his wife (who I am guessing is the real author of this letter based on the sexism crack) know that my property taxes will go up 170 bucks this year if the budget in Windham if approved. That's half a week's pay for me. We own a tiny little condo. My friends that live in an actual house are seeing their tax bills go up by three times that this year if we pass the budget which we will not.

The school budget is a full one million dollars more than last year. How can we sustain increases like this? We the taxpayers simply cannot afford to keep paying increases this huge every year or even every non-election year. I will be voting against the budget again. It is a matter of self-defense.

And the simple fact is that teachers do not work a full year and they are paid rather well. The letter writer says that 30 thou is not a lot of money for someone that processes a Masters Degree but that is only what they start at. Once teachers have tenure and enough seniority to avoid layoffs they are pretty much set up for life. The taxpayers that foot the bill cannot say the same about their jobs. The teachers will get large salary increases every year and they are unionized and this is a very Democrat state. Their interests are well looked after.

The taxpayers interests however are not so well pampered. Huge tax increases are shoved down our throats and if we say one word in protest about the level of the increase we are told we don't care about the children. It is as if the children are being held hostage.

My Mom was a teacher in the 1970s and they were not paid well at all. Teachers today have little to cry about. She taught because she loved teaching and she loved teaching me. My sister is a teacher and I am not unsympathetic to teachers, but there needs to be a balance between fair compensation and the taxpayers ability to pay.

We also have to consider the tax impact on business. If we tax them too much, we lose jobs. How will we pay the teacher's salary increases then? CT is bleeding jobs right now. Many businesses like Pratt and Whitney and Franklin Mushrooms and Rogers Corporation have no choice but to close shop and move to the pro-business states or overseas. The sad thing is as I watch them and the jobs go, I know they are dong the right thing.

John R. Rathgeber, president and CEO of the Connecticut Business & Industry Association, wrote in the Hartford Communist that Expansion Management Magazine has ranked the Connecticut General Assembly the least business-friendly legislature in the nation. I could say the same exact thing for the Windham Board of Education and Finance Board! More taxes are NOT the answer.

Fact is that today the teaching profession is an extraordinarily lucrative one. Many college-educated people do not earn anything near what a matured, experienced teacher earns. True some make more, but a lot make less. This year our teachers need to take one for the team.

And once again we the people pay the budget that pay teachers salary and the letter writer should follow his own advice when he says before accusing and make irrational comments, why don't you get some facts?

And one more thing. The editors characterization of Mrs. Zurowskis letter as "slinging mud" shows considerable bias. She was not slinging mud at anyone. She was simply making her case.

The teachers unions and their buddies in the press are a bit to sensitive these days. When taxpayer protest the level of the tax increases that are being shoved down our throats that is not slinging mud.

That is democracy in action. If you don't like it, move to Cuba.


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