Friday, August 06, 2010

$60,000

That's how much it costs to buy back a teacher in our school district.
[The] RBEF (Redondo Beach Educational Foundation) presented a $120,000 check to the Board of Education at Tuesday night’s meeting.

“It is specifically given to the (school) district to rescind two layoff notices for two teachers and to bring them back to teach our students this fall,” McCarthy said.
When I read that number, I thought it was quite a bargain.  $20,000 post-tax dollars is about $30,000 pre-tax dollars.  If just two families pulled one kid out of a private school that charges tuition of $20,000/year (and there are many in LA), then they can donate that $ instead to the RBEF (or their local school district).  That is enough to buy a teacher for their neighborhood school.

Think about the decrease in traffic congestion and CO2 emissions if the kids can walk to their neighborhood school (and playdates with other neighborhood kids) instead of being chauffeured everywhere.  Think about all the time saved and stress averted.  Think about the effect of a smaller class size on the kids and the teachers.

In this particular case, one of the rehired teachers taught 1st grade; the other taught 5th grade.  In CA, 1st and 5th grade classes can contain 20 and 30 students respectively.  In fiscal emergencies,  the class size can be bumped up to 24 and 34 students.  In a small school, there may be two each 4th and 5th grade classes and one mixed-grade 4-5 classroom with 30-34 kids.  An additional teacher would alleviate the overcrowding in 5 classrooms.

Think about that.  A life raft for two kids, or for 150 kids?

2 comments:

  1. That's all? I'm inclined to think it would be better for all the kids, including the ones now going to private school, but find it more difficult to convince parents of said children.

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  2. Wow, interesting numbers. There really is something inherently unfair about private schooling. Why should kids get better educational opportunities because their parents have more money?

    On the other hand, though, sometimes kids' needs aren't met by the public system, and then what do you do? It *should* meet those needs, but if it doesn't, well...

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