Skip to comments.New Berlin could lose a third of teachers (WI)
Posted on 06/26/2012 5:25:41 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
New Berlin - Jill Werner thought she'd retire in the School District of New Berlin.
A 15-year-employee of the district, she started as a math teacher and then became a guidance counselor at New Berlin West Middle/High School. Colleagues and parents commend the way she connects with students as a counselor and coach, and Werner said she loves West's students, staff and families.
But when Waukesha North High School came calling earlier this year, Werner, 42, accepted.
The counseling position at North comes with less salary and benefits, she said. But it's a ticket out of a district she and an unprecedented number of departing New Berlin staff members say has stifled workers in the wake of Act 10, the legislation passed in 2011 that rolled back collective bargaining and gave school boards and district administration much more authority over wages, work rules and benefits for employees.
New Berlin has become ground zero for testing the delicate balance between the pursuit of savings and workplace satisfaction in schools. Freed from the restrictions of union contracts in this largely Republican, fiscally conservative community, New Berlin's administration and School Board members say they've implemented changes that are good for the district and the 4,700 students enrolled here.
They've gotten control of salaries, bringing them closer to the state average; raised the minimum starting wage by $5,000, because board members believed there was too much compensation on the high end and not enough at the entry level; and in general taken back a district that many considered to be in the pocket of the teachers union.
But whereas other districts are reporting normal turnover, 50 of New Berlin's 314 teachers have resigned or retired so far this year, according to the administration.
(Excerpt) Read more at jsonline.com ...
Wisconsin education ping
FReep Mail me if you want on, or off, this Wisconsin interest ping list.
BTW, did=dig in my comment after the article.
Secondary Headline: Quality of Education Increases.
Yes, those poor “educrats” are hurting.
Now that our governor has been elected for the second time, I predict a mass exodus of teachers that are eligible to retire. Which is a good thing.
One of the biggest problems with unions is that they get the idea that they run the company. When you attempt to disabuse them of this notion they get angry and pout.
The counseling position at North comes with less salary and benefits,.....
So, this district is stifling her "talents" so she's moving to a district that pays less and has fewer benefits .... sounds like the average IQ is going to go up in both places
Knowing the pay scale in her new district, I would say she’ll be getting upwards of $70k.
I looked up the specific person in the story in a searchable database of teacher salaries and in 2009/10, she was making over $70k plus $25k in benefits in New Berlin. I looked up a different guidance counselor at her new school and found a salary of $77k and benefits of $20k in 2009/10, so I would suspect the move is lateral at worst. Now, you do have to figure in 5.5% pension contribution and about 2k in yearly health insurance payments now, but that is consistent between districts.
This is an important step. The low starting salaries discourage good people from entering the field, and the high retiring salaries are not justified.
I would also change requirements so that teaching a subject for two years at the college level automatically qualifies the person to teach the same subject in high school, without need of any degree in "education".
Cry me a river. Many “educators” are poseur bums, taking advantage of naive taxpayers and not educating students. So quit...move...crawl into a hole. Who cares? Seeing all these stories about the “underpaid” so-called educators makes me vomit.
The lying and/or idiot reporter nullifies the whole story premise about five paragraphs down:
“New Berlin’s departing staff members cite concerns that are difficult to quantify; most have little to do with paying more for retirement or benefits. Based on interviews with more than a dozen employees, the resentment appears to stem from feelings that their input doesn’t matter, that the administration doesn’t communicate well with them, that they aren’t supported or appreciated by people in the district...”
The district appears to be “winnowing the chaff”...but looking for new talent at the same time...” raised the minimum starting wage by $5,000”.
50 of 314 teachers leaving may not be too different than the normal turnover rate. Lots of younger teachers leave after two years or so. I woud take this with a grain of salt.
It may also be due the better economic conditions around them due to the changes which Walker has instituted.
The problem is all the hoops that people have to jump through before they get to be paid the good money. Reduce the number of hoops, and you will get better teachers. Another important thing is to make it easier to FIRE bad teachers, and to make the school superintendent's job be on the line if he doesn't hire good teachers and fire bad ones (to prevent him from firing the ones whose only fault is they won't kiss his butt).
This is good for the kids- there are plenty of new fresh unjaded well educated and trained college grads loooking for teaching positions!
They will be easily replaced. Teachers are a dime a dozen.
The school district could take the opportunity to modernize the school from the ground up and release students from the mind numbing, zooy insane asylum designed to serve union members; socialist kooks and haters.
I won’t even try to say it better than you did.
Full agreement here.
I can’t wait to vote Gov. Walker in for a second term.
That will make the Moonbats even more miserable!
Higher starting wage means more applicants and a larger pool from which to pick talented rookies.
If this teacher felt "stifled" by Act 10 changes, I can pretty much guarantee the grass won't be any greener at North.