Friday, May 29, 2009

Fire administrators to save teachers?

What if you fired every single administrator, from school principals to the education officials in Raleigh, to save teacher jobs?

It still wouldn't be nearly enough to make up the billion-dollar shortfall North Carolina is facing in its education budget for 2009-10, according to a memo sent to local educators by N.C. Board of Education Chair Bill Harrison and state Superintendent June Atkinson.

Click here to read the memo.

A House committee's proposal to cut thousands of teacher jobs and shorten the school year has educators up in arms. Harrison and Atkinson sent the memo to illustrate how tough it is protect classrooms when money is this short.

Eliminating all staff from the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, all central office staff from all school districts and all principals and assistant principals would save a mere $436 million, their memo says.

Cut all state spending for testing, textbooks and classroom supplies and you'd save about $214 million more. That leaves another $350 million to cover the billion-dollar gap.

Harrison and Atkinson note that they're making a point, not endorsing the cuts they outline. As they note in a classic understatement: "Few of us will ever see $1 billion."

- Ann Doss Helms


Anonymous said...

Of course. Even better is to give them an option to accept a maximum salary of one grade above teacher scale. The obsene annual salaries they steal need to scaled back to reality. Why should principals and other higher administrators make such outrageous money when teachers are much more valuable?

Bill James is also 100% on the money when he says CMS should immediately CUT the pre-K program since by law funding is for K-12 only.

If CMS funds pre-K why shouldnt it fund post-12?

Espec these Principals who make 130k annually should be slapped down ASAP to 40-50k max and if they dont like it "hit the road jack ..."

Anonymous said...

Mr Gorman makes over $300 K total.

nice example

Anonymous said...

To quote Robin Williams on Charlotte: "Let me get this straight. You are spending $200 million on a hall of fame for NASCAR but your kids go to school in trailers? WTF?"

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous... My wife is a Principle and if you walked a mile in her shoes every day you would hit the road jack no matter how much money you got paid!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone done a study of the lottery to determine whether those funds are actually getting to the school districts as was promised when it was initially approved?

I thought that was supposed to be the silver bullet to ensure that schools would always have the proper funding.

Perhaps there is fat within the Lottery Division that might be cut to allow more revenue to go directly to education?

Anonymous said...

Of course since the cuts will not cover the gap, we will just keep all of those people in place. You have to make the cuts. I had to email the system about something and I got passed down through 5 layers on management to talk to someone. I see four people that can lose their jobs. It will not happen......NEA will not let it happen. Got to love government indoctrination!!

Anonymous said...

Apparently the lottery $$$'s go directly to capital expenditures and not to payroll costs.

Anonymous said...

Cut them, 650 Million is a good start!

This is all BS anyways, how about cutting other programs and your wasteful spending so you can SPEND MORE on education to fill the gap?!?!

I am sure the Sleasys will be glad to give back all that money they stole from NC!

Only industry that is growing, Gov't!

Anonymous said...

Hey, why not cut ALL THE TEACHERS AND ADMIN's jobs and just invest in cool trash cans!

That would make the art people happy, most money to waste!!

Anyone lose there job over that? Anyone get their funding cut because of that? NO!

Anonymous said...

My wife is an AP and works hard for her salary, just like the rest of us. I don't want a pay cut; you don't want a pay cut. The only one who should take a pay cut is Gorman and his lieutenants. Once they lead by example then it's possible for other's to take pay cuts. However, the cuts should not be a flat percentage, but tiered based on your salary. The more you make, the deeper the pay cut. Not an ideal solution, but better than laying off teachers.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 1:13 PM -
Your "principle" wife obviously couldn't teach you how to spell her job.

Anonymous said...

Remember, the PrinciPAL is your "pal".

Anonymous said...

If cutting all school supplies, etc, and all administration gets you only so far, what is the rest being spent on? Teachers don't make that much - is school construction included in this?

Basic Business Principle 1: Never fire the people who actually do the work.

Anonymous said...

Cutting the Pre-k program would be a mistake. My son, who has multiple special needs, is just finishing that program. It has given him a headstart into Kindergarten, where hopefully, he won't require as much help as he would have without it. In a region such as Charlotte, this program is truly needed.

I agree with those that feel that these tremendous annual salaries should be reviewed. It is completely ridiculous.

John said...

The ignorance of many of the comments on this board stand as testimony to the long-standing waste found in public education.

Anonymous said...

"Let me get this straight. You are spending $200 million on a hall of fame for NASCAR but your kids go to school in trailers? WTF?"

Robin Williams has been in drug and alcohol abuse treatment its amazing he even has a brain.

Kids go to school in traitors? Well hell yea becuz there is such an influx of newcomers the rising over burden taxations and contruction companies cant build fast enough.

They used to say you couldnt learn in older schools as opposed to new schools but then when they built new schools and the students still failed they had to drop that excuse.

The trailors are acutually nicer than even the newer classrooms.

Besides learning dosent care if it occurs in trailors or brink and mortar does it?

As far as older buildings, there are colleges in NC and America still using classrooms and buildings up to 250 years old and it dosent hinder college students one bit. Matter fact colleges like the older builders better than new ones.

Larry said...

What is sad is that those same PROFESSIONALS who lead us to these dire straits are the same people we are now depending on to get us out of this mess.

Are we just that willing to keep throwing away the future of thousands of children just because we are to lazy to force the system to change?

Anonymous said...

My wife is a Principle and if you walked a mile in her shoes every day you would hit the road jack no matter how much money you got paid!

If she is a Principal then she sits on azz all day. Walk a mile? Yea rite.
We see Principals and APs leaving when the bell rings every day. They beat the bus drivers out sometimes.

As far as pre-K. Ditch it. Let the parent(s) at least do a little something with their kids instead of using schools for babysitters.

Why dont we just have CMS pay for pre school nurseries for tiny babys and tots?
Dont get any fresh ideas.


Anonymous said...

This seems like a fastastic idea at one school in CMS where the principal is making $90,000 a year and sits in her office all day. We are losing an assistant principal that the faculty, students, and parents love while this principal sits in her office calling the West Learning Community for every situation she is too cowardly to handle. When is CMS going to look at teacher surveys and use those to decide who goes and who stays? This principal is an embarrassment to our school system and our community. Yet, she remains in our school causing chaos each day and letting teacher morale hit rock bottom. TWO teaching positions can be saved if one principal is sent back to her home (where she was also fired from her last position). Look into this Charlotte Observer. Ask CMS why they hired a principal from another state that had been fired from her last district. Could it be the sorority bond she shares with the WLC superintendent? What could it be? Why is she allowed to stay when some of the hardest working educators in CMS are losing their jobs? When are parents and the community going to get a say in who is effective and who is MOST INEFFECTIVE? This school system is so political. No wonder the Steele Creek community has such a high rate of home schooling families.

Anonymous said...

Just make each school a safe house for illegals. That's a sure fire way to nix any spending cuts, and teacher layoffs.

You know "English as a second language" is that important....
What a stupid stupid stupid waste of money that one. I hate going anywhere and reading signs in dual languages.

I think it's a safe bet the reason our school system and our government is so messed up is that no one can see far enough past tomorrow to make am intelligent decision today.

Anonymous said...

It sure does seem easy for all of you who have NEVER worked in a school to make outrageous and stupid comments when you know nothing about how things really work in public schools. Its sort of like a teacher trying to tell a banker or doctor or any other professional how to do their job when they have no first hand knowledge of how to do it. If you know nothing then keep you mouth CLOSED.
Now, there are principals and central office folks in CMS that make entirely too much money. That is not true in surrounding school systems. I work as an AP in one of those systems and I make less than a teacher would in CMS with my same experience and degree level and I work a month longer. So, maybe you can stop generalizing and aim your baseless remarks at the ones that are the problem.
I agree with cutting the fat but some people are ESSENTIAL in the success of your children. GOOD teachers are MORE THAN IMPORTANT as are good school based administrators.
Here is an idea-come substitute in a school for about 2 weeks. Then make an informed decision about who is important and how much people should be paid. I promise you won't see many folks walking out the door at 3:00. Chances are you'll see them walking in at 6:30 am and walking out around 4:00 pm. Oh, and then you'll see them come back a few hours later for choral shows, band concerts, ball games, art shows, open houses, etc.
Don't generalize based on ONE person that may be a slacker. Some of us works our butts off and love your kids. In fact, we often spend more time with them than you do. OK, enough ranting. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous time 3:29PM My wife does not sit on her_ _ _ all day and by the way she does not work in your county!

Anonymous said...

Rant away! There is no need to apologize. I agree with everything you said (and said well).

Yamo said...

NO ONE should have their pay cut! We the people should be campaigning to recall the whole Assembly to start over. As a teacher and future administrator, how else would I continue if I am not supported truly how people believe we be supported? It's the non-educationally aware, detached from reality legislators and governors that put us in this position. Now, even more pressure to get students to "perform" is entreated upon teachers who will have added duties, 35+ kids per class, and less time to process their work. The efficient ideas are there, but suppressed by our "representatives" in Raleigh!

Anonymous said...

Since everyone seems so averse to the public education system, and appears to be advocating for the reduction in staff, pay, overhead, facility improvements, etc., why not go to the FREE MARKET EDUCATION SYSTEM!!Hooray!

(disclaimer: I went to pre-pre-K (age 3), pre-K(4), kindergarten, 1-8 and secondary boarding school all at private schools, plus college and grad school. So did my wife. I'm not some liberal who is deriding private school education).

In essence, why don't we fire every single one of the educators in Meck County, plus all of the administrators, and instead give you the money back in the form of a tax rebate (or a school voucher, or what have you) to use that money to apply to private school education? Yes! Seems like a phenomenal idea.

So maybe out of your property taxes + sales tax + state income tax, etc., you'd save, perhaps, even $2,000 a year. Or let's say you REALLY make some good money, and you'll save (or receive vouchers for) $5,000 a year. Have you looked at one of these "free enterprise* private school tuition charges lately? Entry-level (i.e., craptastic private schools) will still cost you $10k per year. Heck, my parents are still paying off my secondary school education, which was $29,000 per year (that is BEFORE room and board, that was tuition only). Leaving you with a shortfall of approx 24k a year after your wonderful tax mitigation of 5k.

But wait -- then there's college!! And that'll be another 30k a year (what??? you'll send your kids to in-state schools like Chapel Hill or UNC-W ?) Wait for it -- wait for it -- wait..... for it -- are not those taxpayer funded as well? How much will THOSE cost when we take those tax subsidies away on top ?

Any thinkers out there want to propose a plan? I guess we responsible parents should just homeschool, then? (what happens to the spouses second income of 25k a year when he/she has to stay at home to educate your children because there are no public schools left standing to send them to?

Only options as I see it:

-public schools (incremental tax burden)
-home schooling (free, but second-parent's income sacrificed (think: opportunity cost))
-private schools (10k - 35k/yearly per student)
-no education whatsoever (free, but WOW will your children be prepared for a life on public assistance after that wonderful upbringing!)

Anonymous said...

the person below me is clearly drunk. I would like to see them be the principal at an urban high school. Not to mention the fact that Bill James is an elitist, racist, bigot who ignores the city of Charlotte for the interest of his country-club golf buddies. Pre-k programs have been proven to drastically reduce risk factors such as poverty, drug abuse, gang activity and criminal behavoir in at risk students. Tell Bill James he can fund early education now or prisons and funerals in the future. Also...just to discredit a little of the idiocracy below... state and federal funding accounts for Public universites.. i.e. UNC, NC state, ASU, CPCC, UNCC and an array of other colleges which is why CMS doesn't fund post high school - but its the same taxpayer money. Also, by the logic of Professor/Economic expert..(NOT), Bill James we should also cut Adavance Placement funding for college bound students, extra curriculars like the arts and sports just because their not essential in his eyes. Thank god for reason and public forums so the guy below me doesn't set policy! Lets try priortizing education and fund it through bonds and the so called NC EDUCATION LOTTERY which by the way is boasting outrageous profits.

Anonymous said...

Hey Anonymous 2:24 PM. I was waiting to see how many people would find my spelling of principal.Thanks your number one!!!

Anonymous said...

Mr. James is 100% on target calling to cut this sacred cow unlawful pre-K nursury babysitter program fat that would save 16 million dollars in order that teachers would not have to lose their jobs. Any idiot calling him a racist bigot needs to look in the mirror for the real one.

Why cant parents babysit and do a little home teaching of their own kids up until age 5? Is that too much to ask since CMS will be babysitting them for the next 13 yrs?

To make bogus threats to prevent future street thugs CMS must never scrap pre-K babysitting is laughable at best. Pipe down or Kindergarten may have to be scrapped or even more. The free lunches def need to be scrapped. Fat kids going to bed hungry may be a good idea to make them more healthy. America is an obese nation.

The public school system was never designed to let parents off the hook from their own responsibilities of raising their own kids.

And these overpaid overrated whiny principals/assistants can cry all they want but we know they do nothing but sit on their fat azz and draw an easy big fat paycheck.

Cut every single administrator salary 50% immediately and then decide who will stay. Let them whine because there is nowhere to go. There are no other jobs anywhere in NC or America and its getting worse as tax revenues plumett.
Hire in-state although with the economy there may be no hiring for a long time.

Anonymous said...

Whoever said ignorance is bliss must have been a subscriber to posts like this.

I love to read how the big bad public school employees are ruining our culture. EVERY SINGLE ONE has a hidden agenda. ALL OF THEM are lazy and just do it for the 3 months off in the summer (by the way--it's only 2 which are filled up with professional development and some time off). NONE of the princiPALS have princiPLES.

Why is it that a teacher who goes to school for 4-6 years and has a college degree is not worth the same as a doctor or lawyer? Why is it that principals and assistant principals who oversee thousands of dollars, numerous staff members, and hundreds of students are not worth the price that executives make in the "private" sector? Everyone wants to blame education and the big fat salaries that educators make for tearing down our society. They forget that it's educators who got them where they are.

When all of the assistant principals are fired and teachers have to deal with the fights, drugs, insubordinate students, custody issues, domestic violence, federal/state/local paperwork, developing and implementing consistent safety measures, account for hundreds of thousands of dollars in textbooks/computers/funtiture, and maintain the buildings--let's see how much teaching is done. THEN let's see the posts of people saying that their kids aren't learning anything.

Yes, I am an assistant principal and am appalled at the ignorance of some people. The reason we have so much red-tape and need so many people to run the buildings is because of the ignorant people that post on this site wanting more and more regulations and accountability. Someone has to file the 40 forms for a simple purchase of a pencil because so many watchdog groups want to track our spending. Someone has to kick the bad kids out so that "your kid" gets a safe and sound education. Someone has to answer your phone calls when you call at 10:25 during classtime and the teacher is teaching the class. Someone has to deal with your overbearing and insensitive attitudes when your child "makes a mistake".

Let the teachers teach. Let the leaders lead. We need to support education instead of tearing it down. Come in and actually see what goes on in a building and ASK why things are the way they are. Don't be surprised at the list of regulations and red-tape that is in place (from our legislatures due to frivolous law suits) and then complain.

Unlike other educators, I am not sorry for my rant. It needs to be said.

Anonymous said...

Geesh. These assistant principals jobs may be worth even less than 50% and not even on grade with a teacher pay scale.

Practially anyone with a degree can be accepted somewhere to a masters to get into administration as opposed to the 10years it takes to become a doctor where 1 out of 100 are accepted. Big difference.

As far as law school any good lying weasil with half a brain who can pass the bar can be an attorney and chase ambulances with their whiplash phonies. Maybe this is where some of these junior administrators should be.

By this logic maybe pro atheletes should make equal to the minors or semi-pro. Or maybe junior or senior administrators should make equal to teachers. Its all about equality.

Its the old chief vs indian syndrone. Too many worthless chiefs and not enough good indians to do the real work.

Time to break out the hatchet on a few fatty programs and put lazy chiefs or junior chiefs on a diet...

Anonymous said...

Maybe we need to reverse all this and give teachers the authority to fire administrators? Its all a one way street now with management having labor firmly by the gonads and squeezing hard. Why not also fire overpaid principals and let assistants assume control at a lesser pay grade under authority of the teachers? Lowly underpaid teachers need to be the big boss for a change.

Anonymous said...

Okay, people, we could use a little focus here. Regardless of your opinions of teachers, school administrators, etc., the fact remains that the NC House is calling for a cut of one BILLION dollars to the education budget. The budget memo points out that even if a whole long list of positions, departments and all textbooks and supplies were cut out, that still wouldn't be able to make up such a large amount of money. I am a teacher, and I have some questions for you. Do you think that a one billion dollar cut from public education is reasonable, or even possible? If so, please give me a list of what could be cut that would add up to so much and still allow our schools to operate at all. Conversely, if you do not believe that it is feasible to cut one billion dollars from public education, what do you plan to do about it? I assure you that if every educator in the state contacts our legislators (many of us already have) it would not have the impact of contacts from the public at large. Do you have other serious, feasible ideas for the legislators on what alternative budget cuts can be made? Would you consider contacting your legislators and asking them to make different cuts so that our schools can continue to operate?

Anonymous said...

The whole problem stems from management vs. labor just like in private capitalism and many times indians who move up to chief forget too easily where they came from.
We must rectify the imbalance of power. The union is ineffective as usual.

More power to the real workers who are the teachers and 99% of the core substance of education yet treated as inferior subordinates by the oppresive power hungry overpaid administrators.

Those who move up have blood on their hands and forget the struggles of the inferior proletariets caught in the middle taking the blame for everything yet when there is success are overlooked as this goes to the bourgeoise elite.

As Karl Marx correctly stated in the 1848 published Manifesto it always comes down to the 1000s of years age old class warfare struggle between the haves and have nots, management vs labor, bourgeoise vs proletariet, chief vs indian, tribal chief vs villager, oppressor vs oppressed, administrator vs teacher. It is incredible to witness the hypocrisy of those who claim to be oppressed after they become the oppressor.

Power to the oppressed

Fight the oppressor

Equal power balance share

Anonymous said...

Good point. Even African slavery involved the brutal ruthless elite powered blue blooded tribal chiefs selling off millions and millions of their own lowly peasant tribe members to the slave brokers over many thousands of years mostly to Asia and middle eastern arab nations. Europe white nations were in for nomore than 250 yrs before outlawing it.
This proves that for all of history irrespective of 1st, 2nd, or 3rd world, all nations all cultures all races all continents are basically the same and nothing is new under the sun. Slavery is still practiced today the world over.
Those tyrants and dictators in power will abuse their authority 24/7 and use those of lower stature like their own personal property so nothing ever changes ... School systems are no exception. Those in power abuse.