Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

ExxonMobil lobbies for teacher pay

An ExxonMobil TV ad reads:
If we want to improve our schools, what should we invest in? Maybe new buildings? What about updated equipment? They can help, but recent research shows that nothing transforms schools like investing in advanced teacher education. Let’s build a strong foundation. Let’s invest in our teachers so they can inspire our students. Let’s solve this.
No, there is no recent research that schools can be improved by paying teachers to attend grad school, or anything like that.

If there were really any such research that ExxonMobil wanted to promote, it would be on the web site. It appears that the PR department has decided that the public image of the company could be improved by aligning itself in favor of teachers and against taxpayers and students.

In the last presidential debate, a related issue arose:
PRESIDENT OBAMA: ... And what I now want to do is to hire more teachers, especially in math and science, because we know that we've fallen behind when it comes to math and science. And those teachers can make a difference.

Now, Governor Romney, when you were asked by teachers whether or not this would help the economy grow, you said, this isn't going to help the economy grow. When you were asked about reduced class sizes, you said class sizes don't make a difference. But I tell you, if you talk to teachers, they will tell you it does make a difference.
Romney is correct that the research shows that reducing class size does not improve student performance. The teachers like smaller classes, because they do less work and there is more demand for teachers.

Of course teachers want more pay and less work. I don't blame them for asking. But teacher pay has gone sharply up in recent years, with no improvement in the schools. When others side with the teachers, they are working towards worse schools.

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