The perceptions of Brett Delegard (March 3) and Robert Archer (Feb. 15) of teacher financial sacrifice are that: perceptions. The difference between the two: Archer’s is based on experience, Delegard’s on an abstract reading of statistical abstractions.
My own perception comes from among the following professional experience: military, church work, publishing and large institutional administration. None came close to demanding the interpersonal facility, the intellectual acumen, the organizational adaptability and the demands upon one’s free time as did teaching. Teachers from kindergarten through graduate school work untold hours in their profession, one with which Delegard has no experience.
As to teachers’ nobility, we might all consider Delegard’s apparent disdain for the notion itself. I know of no teacher who considers her- or himself to be noble, nor of any teacher who went into the profession aspiring to monetary affluence. What I do know is that they entered to enhance the learning lives of students who would become the adults of our democracy. Who, as such, would in turn contribute to the ongoing welfare of their communities, states and our nation.
True, some have become disillusioned. But I’m sure perceptions like Delegard’s have had nothing to do with it.