Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Teacher Salaries

Via this blog I have consistently called for more consumer choice in the USA education system -- a theme that some of my readers have mistaken for an "attack on teachers." Now this perception that I am somehow "anti-teacher" is completely wrong. I honestly want teachers to be paid higher salaries and want them to have students who actually want to be in their classrooms.

Throughout my academic career I have had a number of teachers who have been a very positive force on my life including my grandmother who taught in a one room school house (no, I was not a student but she taught me a lot about life) and Mr. Bob Plunkett, a high school teacher who played a major role in preparing me for college. I paid tribute to Mr. Plunkett's career via one of my first blog posting from September 2005 --

http://spacebeaglenotes.blogspot.com/2005_09_01_archive.html

I have also consistently blogged here with the statistic that "most state government budgets already allocate at least 50% to their public school systems so the SCHOOLS do not need more of our tax money.............." But we can improve education substantially without adding one more dollar to school budgets by simply paying teachers more for the work they do today.

By now my readers (yes both of you!!) are probably wondering -- "how is that possible, how can we pay teachers more without spending more tax money on schools?" The very simple solution of course is for state governments to exempt teacher salaries from all state personal income taxes --- there you go, an instant salary increase for teachers!!

So why should we implement such a state law?

  • Having higher teacher salaries would attract more talented workers from private sector jobs to become teachers thus creating a larger labor pool for schools to interview.
  • Such a tax reform would help new college graduates who want to become teachers pay off their students loans much faster.
  • Such a tax exemption for teachers would help the rest of us achieve tax reform on personal income taxes since this tax exemption for teachers would be discriminatory which is something we have to eliminate in society of course!!! :-)
  • This tax reform would ensure that more money gets to teachers NOT to the "school-administration complex" which is what happens today.
  • Teachers would have more money to buy classroom supplies so we don't have to read the annual media accounts in September of each year depicting teachers who have to spend personal funds to buy classroom supplies.

Almost the perfect combination here -- improved schools without spending more tax money -- so hopefully interested readers can pursue this kind of tax reform at the state and federal level.

Stop taxing teachers,

Todd

1 comment:

jdsqrd said...

A tax idea of yours with which I completely agree.